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Tannishtha discards sari, turns pole dancer

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Tannishtha Chatterjee
Tannishtha Chatterjee who has won rave global reviews for her performance as the repressed Bangladeshi housewife from London in Brick Lane is about to startle us-and herself-out of our collective pants. Yup, that sari-clad demure docile actress from Brick Lane turns into a pole dancer in a new British film.

Yet untitled, this chick flick about two immigrants in London is directed by the Brick Lane director Sarah Gavron. "Hard to believe, isn't it?" Tannishtha laughs from London where she's rehearsing for the film. "It's the story of two pole dancers in London. One from East Europe and one Mauritian. It's about these two women's contrasting attitude to life. They're friends in the beginning and then through time and different situations and hardships in their respective lives they fall apart. It is about that dark side that we have in us. My character is really interesting. She's someone who lives in a false world. Nothing she says about herself is true. She is a compulsive liar." While Tannishtha plays the Mauritian pole dancer, the Romanian actress Anamaria Marina (from the film 4 Months 3 Weeks&2 Days) plays the European dancer.

Interestingly Tannishtha is researching and practising hard for the pole dancer's role. "We're rehearsing for the film and evolving the final script through the process. It is really interesting. I'm working with the same director as Brick Lane. So there's a comfort level."

So will Tannishtha strip, a la Demi More in Striptease? "Not much. Pole dancing doesn't necessarily mean stripping. Is that a disappointment?" the actress laughs.

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