Actor Anusree on finding her footing in tinsel town
Meeting actor Anusree is a bit of a surprise. The jeans-clad, petite, grounded youngster couldn’t be more different from Kalamandalam Rajasree, the gangly, sari-clad, endearingly naïve country lass that the actor essayed in Lal Jose’s blockbuster Diamond Necklace. So memorable was Anusree’s debut role in Mollywood.
“Even now, after a handful of films in the kitty, people still know me as Kalamandalam Rajasree! They even think that I studied at Kalamandalam! Hey! I haven’t even studied dance,” says the actor. And here we were, expecting to hear the sound of the chilanka that tinkled whenever her character appeared on screen… (Laughs) “I’m glad that Rajasree, though only a small character in the film, continues to have an impact on the minds of film viewers. I don’t think I am anything like her in real life. The only similarity, I feel, is that I too am a country girl at heart,” adds Anusree as we catch up with her on the sets of debutant Shambu Purushothaman’s Vedivazhipadu, the shooting of which is progressing in and around the city.
Her role in Vedivazhipadu, she adds, will be another landmark role for her, a complete change from the “naadan” (ethnic) image that we’ve seen from her in her subsequent films Red Wine and Left Right Left, and even in the upcoming Pedithondan (in which she stars opposite Suraj Venjaramoodu), the shooting of which she has just completed, and Lal Jose’s Pullipulikalum Aatinkuttiyum.
“In Vedivazhipadu, I play a bold, live wire anchor/all-in-all at a television channel. It’s an exciting role, personally, because it is a complete departure from what I’ve done before. It’s a challenge too because I don’t know much about being and sounding city-bred. I grew up in rustic Kamukumcherry village near Pathanapuram and so I am essentially learning with each shot,” says the 22-year-old. She first hit the limelight as the winner of ‘Big Break’ on Surya TV, a reality show launched by Lal Jose to find an actor for his Tamil film. “The film fell through but Lal sir called and told me that he couldn’t think of anyone else but me for Rajasree and offered me Diamond Necklace. I jumped at the chance,” she says.
Despite her obvious success with Rajasree, she has thus far essayed only small roles. Is it because she is choosy? “Not really. I am particular about listening to scripts, though. I only agree to do characters that have some sort of a growth, a beginning and an end. It’s immaterial whether that role is major or minor. You know, for all the good that Rajasree did to my career, I didn’t get many calls offering me roles. It took one year for Red Wine! Not that I’m complaining; I never dreamed of being a heroine in the first place. Now though, I’m loving tinsel town and I want to do all kind of roles. But I don’t think I will ever be the arm candy kind of heroine,” she says.