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Sunday, October 5, 2008

Tanushree Dutta: From sex symbol to girl next door

Tanushree DuttaWarner Bros first foray into Bollywood, ‘Saas Bahu aur Sensex’ (Mother in law, daughter in law and the Indian stock exchange) is finally released in India and abroad this Friday. “It’s a different type of film, not your typical masala movie,” leading lady Tanushree Dutta informs me in predictable bolly-speak. Why did the major Hollywood studio choose this film as their maiden venture into Hindi cinema? Dutta enlightens me: “They saw something in the script that they liked.”

The former Miss Universe 2004 finalist is currently attempting to make inroads into Bollywood, with limited success. Dutta has a sex symbol image as a result of saucy roles in forgettable films with titles like ‘Goodboy Badboy’, ‘Speed’ and ‘Chocolate’. Is there any sex in the film? Dutta laughs: “There isn’t any sex in the film; it’s for the Indian family audience.” How does she feel about her racy image and past films? “I regard my sex symbol image as a compliment; I don’t regret being part of those films,” Dutta reveals. She adds: “Now I am playing the girl next door who has a strange relationship with her mother in this film.”

Dutta has been in the headlines recently for lambasting her directors, accusing a senior male co-star of indecent behaviour, denying rumours of an alleged secret marriage and there has been speculation regarding her sudden weight loss. How does she feel to be so controversial? She told a film magazine: “I read the gossip about me, laugh over it and want to say just one thing to those who write nasty stuff – use hotter pictures of me!”

Fans of the hottie will be disappointed: her next release is ‘Rama, the Saviour’, a kiddie movie.