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Time for change

Isha Koppikar wants to move from item numbers to meaningful roles

PHOTO: Sandeep Saxena

Image makeover: Isha Koppikar.

Isha Koppikar is a cautious soul now. She answers queries carefully and her statements are tinged with humour. She has grown wiser too, especially after the "bitter experience of Pinjar", a film on Partition by Chandraprakash Dwivedi in which she played Rajjo, sister-in-law of the protagonist, played by Urmila Matondkar.

Getting wiser

After a little prodding, she talks about the experience. "The audience loved my role in Pinjar. I got lots of fan mails congratulating me for portraying Rajjo so well.But I was disheartened to see that except me almost every other actor in the film got nominated for the National Awards. It was because I had limited scope to showcase my talent. I decided that in future I would not accept such roles. I have done cameos with many big stars but they have got me nowhere. In this industry, I have faced lots of disappointments. I am cautious now," says Isha. These days she is busy promoting her forthcoming film Kyaa Kool Hai Hum.

Mention Kya Kool... and catch the glint back in her eyes. "I am playing a tough cop, who takes eve-teasers and law-breakers to task. Hence she is called Urmila `Mar-tod-kar'," she laughs. She accepted this film because it is a comedy, produced by Ekta Kapoor. "Ekta is a lavish producer. Everything on her sets is well organised and she also makes payments on time," says Isha.

This film is quite like Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron because it "portrays serious issues in a humourous way." Isha points out that the `K' factor in the film's name, for which Ekta is known, is not to ensure its success. "Cine-goers are not fools. If the film is good it will click even without a `K' in it. If it is bad, nothing can help it."

Not willing to rush for opportunities in crossover films, Isha thinks she should prove her mettle in Bollywood before venturing into other directions. But she hastily adds, "I haven't said `khallas' to item numbers. It gave me visibility. I would like to continue doing them." Incidentally, she plays a bar dancer in her next film.

RANA SIDDIQUI

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