Kannada actor-cum-politician Pooja Gandhi cherishes her challenging role in ‘Dandupaleyam’

“It is the boldest film I’ve done in my entire career, I had to even carry a 15 kilo pig on my shoulders and there was a lot of itching on my body after pack up. People love to see me as a glamorous and a beautiful heroine, they thought that I lost my mind when I agreed to do Dandupaleyam,” says the popular Kannada actor-cum-politician Pooja Gandhi on her dubbed debut released this week. In the city to promote her film, she says she wanted to act opposite Nagarjuna in her debut film.

The actor has done a lot of films, experimented by doing offbeat subjects hoping that it would bring her critical acclaim and was always open to risks. She heard the story, saw the clippings of the violent Dandupaleyam gang and thought it was a challenge for both the director and the production house to take up that project. She adds, “I have been living in Karnataka for the past seven years, knew about the gang but not their modus operendi , about their gang rapes and contract killings. When I was offered the role, I just grabbed it. It was a challenge to take it up.”

The newspaper advertisement had a gruesome visual of the police either squeezing toes with a wrench or pulling out the nails. Even during third degree torture by the cops, Pooja had to show a care-a-damn attitude.

She adds, “It was disturbing, the walk, talk, I had to smoke beedis and give bland expressions. I played the character of Lakshmi, the master mind who does a recce before striking a particular home. She is an uneducated woman but is very intelligent, has knowledge of police and the court. After the movie released, we met Chalapathi who cracked the case, he told us shocking stories that make you wonder if such people exist. I’m proud of being a part of Dandupaleyam.”

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