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Beyond Bollywood

Actor Shruti Haasan hopes to act in films across culture and language boundaries

Written by PriyankaPereira | Mumbai |
June 21, 2013 2:10:52 am

The fact that Shruti Haasan is a stunner is common knowledge. Petite and charming,she has always had admirers of her beauty,but her acting abilities have often been under the scanner. Tell Shruti about it and she turns pensive. She has been a slow starter,but the singer-turned-actor believes that she has come a long way since her debut in 2009 with Luck. With six releases this year — two each in Hindi,Tamil and Telugu — the actor has delved deeper into acting. “I have begun to like roles that push me a little more and expect me to think out-of-the-box. I am looking for more challenges. I have learnt to be besharam as an actor,” she laughs.

In Bollywood,Shruti has simultaneous releases — Ramaiyya Vastavaiya with newcomer Girish Kumar,where she plays a girl with urban sensibilities,and D-Day where she portrays the role of a Pakistani prostitute,who in spite of undergoing emotional and physical pain is hopeful of finding love.

Shruti,who was born in a multi-cultural family with talented actors,Kamal Haasan and Sarika,as parents,has been exposed to all kinds of cinema. Yet,she used to be a sportsperson at heart,and never really considered films as a career. “I used to see the actresses and find them so perfect. And I was so imperfect — a tomboy. I was more inclined towards music,I composed music and performed a few gigs. And this is what I thought I would do with my life,” she says. Somewhere being “her parents’ daughter” resulted in her bagging Luck. “Even then,I was unsure. I did not know if I could pull it off,” she says. “After my debut film had released,I asked myself,‘Is this what I really want to do?’,‘Will I be able to do it well?’” Something within her told her that she

should not give up and she stayed on.

Most South Indian actors try their hand at Bollywood,after they have established themselves down South. But Shruti decided to take the opposite route. After her Hindi debut,she went on to do Tamil and Telugu films. One may look at it as a way of reassuring growth in her film career,but Shruti believes that much like her father,she is here to do Indian films and not just “Hindi” ones. “I was brought up in a house where I spoke Tamil with my father and Hindi with my mother. I also knew Telugu and English. So,I want to do films in all these languages,jump cultures and get audiences from all over,” she says. After all,Shruti’s decision to do South Indian films has yielded brilliant results,with Gabbar Singh,3 and 7aum Arivu doing blockbuster business.

Shruti is in a happy space today,travelling every three days to different locations for her shoots. Her releases no longer make her nervous. “I really feel there is only so much in your hands. Films are destiny,after all.” On Shruti’s wishlist is a Hindi film for which she can act as well as compose music for. Music,she believes,has taken a backseat in her life of late. “Being a musician gives me the greatest joy. But this is the time for acting. One can sing at 16 or 60,” she says.

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