Oct 15, 2007

Actress Bhumika Chawla Interview

Actress Bhumika Chawla doesn't need introduction. She is very popular heroine not only in Telugu but also in Tamil, Hindi, Bhojpuri, and Punjabi films. So many "eligible bachelors" might have wished to marry a girl like her, and now, she is getting married this month, shattering the desires of all those dreamers.

I first met her on the sets of her debut film Yuvakudu. As she's a pure vegetarian, Jayasudha gaaru used to get a lunch box every day from her home for Bhumika. She used to be reserved and not talk much on the sets. Though I tried to get in touch with her later, she was busy with shooting or there always seemed to be some reason, and it never happened until she came to the USA. Thanks to Dasarath who arranged a meeting with her on the sets of Swagatham.

Q: Tell me about your background.

Bhumika: (Laughs) I can't remember how many times I answered this question in the past! My father is an Army Officer and we thus used to travel around India a lot. I have an elder brother, who's also a military officer, and a married elder sister; I am the youngest in the family. My schooling was in Delhi and then I moved to Mumbai in 1997 in search of a profession. While in college, I used to model for a lot of products. Seeing one of these ads Supriya and Karunakaran gaaru selected me for the film Yuvakudu and the rest ...everyone knows.

Q: After the super hits Kushi, Simhadri, Okkadu, you became more selective and did very less number of films in Telugu. In fact, you were not seen much sometimes!

It's true that I became selective after Okkadu. Before then, I did whatever films were offered to me. At some point of time, one would want to do only such films that give satisfaction to oneself...

Q: But, don't you think that you may not be in the race if you choose to be selective and thus be doing less number of films?

Bhumika: Hmm... I was never actually "out of work". I was busy doing films in other languages. I did Hindi, Tamil, Punjabi, and Bhojpuri films when I was not seen on Telugu screen. When a script excites me, I'll do any film!

Q: Some of the directors you worked with were poles apart! For example, the mass-appealing Rajamouli and Vinayak, the classy Neelakantha and Feroz Abbas Khan (Gandhi - My father fame), the soft romantic film-directors like Dasarath, Karunakaran, etc. How do you fit or be in vibe with all these classes of directors?

Bhumika: Each director is different, in fact. As an artiste, I'd need to show difference between each role I play. First thing I'd see is how good the role is - how is the director projecting the role, how is he going to make the scene, etc.. With each film, one keeps improving. My way is to take all the positive energy from the directors who I work with and to learn something new every time before I move to the next film with that knowledge.

...While doing Tere Naam, I was in Kulu-Manali and Rajamouli gaaru called me to tell the basic story of Simhadri. When he narrated the story, I was so impressed that I immediately agreed to do the film. I have not got a chance to know the complete script at that time, but I had confidence in Rajamouli and did the film. Similar is the case with Neelakantha gaaru. Some people were not happy when I signed the film Missamma - they felt that mine was a wrong step and warned me to refrain from doing the film. I, however, liked the way he narrated the script to me and thus went ahead and did the film. His way of acting was different too - before he told me how to enact the scene, he asked to show my way of doing the scene first, and then when the camera starts rolling, he used to suggest improvisations to my performance. He thus got a very natural performance from me. ...The bottom line is that each director will have a different way and one has a chance to learn new things every day.

Q: Your re-entry into Telugu seems sudden. Any reason?

Bhumika: ...Because both offers were totally different roles! When Dasarth narrated the story to me, I liked it because it shows how two entirely different people fall in love with each other in a beautiful way. On the screen too, the movie appears exactly the way he narrated. On the other hand, Anasuya falls in a completely different genere. Both these offers came in at the same time when I was doing Satyabhama. Thus, I agreed to do them.

Q: There seems to be a similarity of Dasarath's film story to your real life - your fiance Bharath Thakur and you come from different fields and fall in love...

...And, there ends the similarity. But, of course, that was not the reason for me signing this film! I signed it because it's a film where characters in the movie behave like real people that we see in everyday life. The movie is coming out as nicely too.

Q: I recently read in a leading newspaper that you have not thought anything about doing films in your post-marital life. Did you make up your mind now or are you still thinking about it?

As of now, I already signed a Hindi masala movie called Three Much. The film will start regular shooting from January. So, this means that I am going to be around (smiles).

Q: You're also a poetess, I know. Do you have plans of bringing them to print?

Bhumika: I'd like to compile them and publish soon, but I do not want all of them to get published - I'd choose only those which can really reach the very common man. I want to keep my poetry simple enough to be understood by everyone.

Q: Did you meet poets like Gulzar..?

Bhumika: I was fortunate to meet Gulzar saab, but only once. After publishing the book, however, I'd definitely like to meet both of them.

Q: You're doing so many Telugu films, and you're a poetess to. Do you really understand the lyrics of these Telugu songs?

Bhumika: Honestly, no! But, before the shooting, I'll definetly meet with the director and get word-to-word meening for the lyric in order to get the right expression for the shot.