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Urmila likes to constantly experiment

Tuesday, August 22, 2006
New Delhi (UNI): Hers has been an amazing transformation, from being the 'ultimate epitome' of glamour in Bollywood in the late 90s to the 'favourite mascot' of meaningful cinema in the new millennium. From being Bollywood's 'glamour girl' who set the silver screen ablaze in the late 90s with films like Rangeela, Daud and Pyar Tune Kya Kiya - much before the arrival of 'sex sirens' like Bipasha Basu, Mallika Sherawat and Neha Dhupia on the scene, Urmila Matondkar has today established herself as a 'natural choice' of meaningful filmmakers in India after her pathbreaking performances in Pinjar, Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara and Banaras- A Mystic Love Story. Continuing with her quest for meaningful roles, Urmila now features in Onir's Bas Ek Pal, a modern love story exploring the complexities of modern urban relationships.

''For me, at this stage of my career, it is important that the roles and the films that I pick up have something different to offer than what I have already done. In fact, in the last last few years, I have tried to do experimentation with my roles in whatever way I can'' Urmila told UNI in an interview on the eve of her latest release. ''The main purpose of it all is do different kinds of cinema, and roles that challenge me as an actress. So whenever I come across something that excites my creative side, I opt for that." It is this desire to try her hand at something different and unexplored that led Urmila to take up the role of the 'modern and intelligent' Anamika that she play in Bas Ek Pal ''I play Anamika Joshi, a civil engineer. A typically today's girl, Anamika is very intelligent in her thinking. What I liked about Anamika is the genuine quality of the character,''she says.

Working with Onir, who had earlier made the critically-acclaimed My Brother Nikhil, was another reason for urmila to do the film. ''I have seen his My Brother Nikhil and found it to be a very beautiful film. Ever since, I had wanted to work with him some time'' Urmila said. Having worked with him, Urmila is all praise for Onir as a filmmaker. ''One USP of the film for me is the fact that the screenplay of the film is multilayered. Also, the characters and situations in the film come across as so real. In fact, a lot of people will instantly identify with the the movie which is about how a single incident brings about a change in the lives of the five protagonists, played by me, Sanjay Suri, Jimmy Shergill, Juhi Chawla and Rehan Engineer. Life is, after all, not straight'' Urmila said.

A unique feature of the film, slated for released on August 25, is the fact that for the first time a colour code has been used to characterize the various players in the film. ''It is for the first time, a filmmaker has associated a colour with a particular emotion displayed by a character in the film. All of it has helped to lend the right ambience to the film'' she says. The film explores the complexities of modern day urban relationships. Bas Ek Pal is the journey of revelations, passions, jealousies, insecurities, love and anger as each character searches for that elusive moment of happiness.

The film was premiered at the recently-concluded Asian film festival in the capital.

About her debut on the small screen with the reality show 'Superstars' on Sahara One where she, along with ace choreographer Shiamik Davar, will be judging the ability of contestants to faithfully imitate their favourite superstars, Urmila said,''I am really excited about the show and eager to be a part of it as it provides me with an opportunity to witness first hand the sheer creativity of the hundreds of 'true Bollywood fans' who will perform at such a huge platform. After all, it is the hundreds and thousands of such passionate Bollywood fans tht make us the huge stars that we are today.''

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