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Acting for creativity

With her head firmly on her shoulders, Hrishitaa Bhatt is a woman of substance


FROM HER looks -- happy-go-lucky, chirpy, childlike and innocent-faced -- she does not seem to be one reading autobiographies of great people or novels with philosophical inclination, talking Shakespeare and Nelson Mandela and leaving little scope for gossip. But Hrishitaa Bhatt, 24, is a girl of substance. However, she is certainly not getting roles of substance in films. She accepted Tigmanshu Dhulia's Haasil because her role had "a touch of reality", Dil Vil Pyar Pyar because it was "an experiment of a different kind" with her "favourite music director, R.D. Burman" and Out of Control because she and Brande are the two women around whom the story revolves.

"I am biwi number two in the film, and at places, I get to play many shades," she says. Her roles in Asoka in which she played a Buddhist girl, and Shararat - a film that however bombed at the box office - in which she played a journalist who transforms a non-serious guy into a serious one opposite Abhishek Bachchan, "were roles of weight" and brought her some recognition, but that helped her little in lifting her career graph. She hasn't lost hope though.

"These days, there is scope for women to do roles of substance in the films." She justifies her commercially unviable roles by pointing out, "Unless you showcase your talent, acting in different moulds, how can you make one believe that you can perform well? So I am concentrating on films that help me portray different shades, let's see if that helps my career."

This graduate in philosophy from Jamnabai Mithibai College, Mumbai spends most of her leisure time reading biographies and autobiographies of great people. "They inspire me a lot. I read little fiction, for after all they aren't part of reality, so why not read something that comes from a real life and leaves some scope for positive thinking?" she queries.

Hrishitaa never took any training classes for film acting. "I was very active in my school and college days, did a lot of theatre there. After college, I wanted to do something creative, and acting needs creativity at each step, so I chose acting as a career." And her training in Kathak during childhood, also came in handy, she informs.

RANA SIDDIQUI

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