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Feline, fast and favourite

"I am not comfortable doing regular heroine roles."


WITH THE runaway success of `Thiruda Thirudi' came fame as a hurricane for Chaya Singh. After sustaining the momentum with a dance number in `Arul', she now looks forward to a long innings in Kodambakkam.

During the gruelling shoot for `Solli Adippaen' in the Rock City, CHAYA SINGH took some time off for a brief chit-chat with PRATHIBHA PARAMESWARAN and identified her way in the industry.

Q: How did you step into Tamil cinema?

A: It was quite a co-incidence. I was already doing a few films in Kannada when opportunity came beckoning at me for a meaty role in `Thiruda Thirudi'.

Q: How has been life after `Thiruda Thirudi'?

A: Well, we hardly expected the song to be such a big hit. But there it was, blaring all over Tamil Nadu. People started addressing me either by the name of the character or `Manmada rani.' It is really great to be identified by one's role.

Q: Are there any movies in hand now?

A: Yes, I am doing `Solli Adippaen' directed by S. A. C. Ramki. It is a movie with all commercial ingredients meant for mass entertainment. The movie has comedian, Vivek, as the hero, and that makes it stand apart. And I'm also working in a Telugu movie called `Tirupachi.'

Q: Are you choosy about your roles?

A: I guess I am rather choosy. I am not comfortable doing regular heroine roles. If you look at `Thiruda Thirudi,' you will find that my role was not of a regular heroine kind. I want to do characters that make a difference to the story, something that I will be remembered for.

Q: Will you be doing more movies in other languages?

A: I am waiting for chances in Hindi and Bengali films. I have already done 12 Kannada films, a Telugu film and a Malayalam film. For me, language is not a barrier at all. I would like to do good roles in any language.

Q: Will you be doing more of the item songs like in `Arul'?

A: I do not find anything wrong in doing dance numbers like that. It is always good to work with good actors and directors. If the song is good enough, I might just end up doing more.

Q: Do you feel the Tamil filmdom gives you enough space to experiment as an actress?

A: I certainly feel there is a gender bias. But then, it is there everywhere. I believe if I work hard and with a little bit of luck, I will do well.

Q: What would your dream role be?

A: I would like to do the part of a person with some handicap.

Q: How much do you think great looks matter in movies?

A: I do not feel it matters at all whether anyone is good looking or not. If looks had been everything, then Johnny Lever would never have made it to be a successful comedian in Bollywood. For that matter, actor Dhanush is not conventionally good looking either.

Q: Has your family been receptive about your being in films?

A: Well, my mother has been really supportive. Hailing from a conservative Rajput background, my father was rather sceptical. However, he is happy for me now.

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