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Updated: June 23, 2012 19:27 IST

Pooja Kumar's shot at fame

K.R. Manigandan
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Pooja Kumar
Pooja Kumar

Pooja Kumar grew up watching Kamal’s films and is now ecstatic sharing screen space with him in Vishwaroopam

She might be 10 films old, but her role in her latest film is bound to get her more attention than all the 10 films put together.

So, it comes as no surprise that actor Pooja Kumar is excited about being a part of the Kamal Haasan-starrer Vishwaroopam. “The man is a legend. His passion for the profession is amazing and he is always eager to learn despite having achieved so much,” she says.

Pooja, who hails from Missouri in the U.S., has grown up on a steady diet of Indian films. “My dad is from Dehradun and mom from Lucknow. We migrated to the U.S. in the Seventies. My parents were the ones who introduced me to Indian cinema. They would bring me to India for my vacations. In fact, the first Indian film I watched was Kamal sir’s Ek Duje Ke Liye and was overwhelmed by his screen presence.” She became such a huge fan of the actor that she has watched almost all his films. “I loved the role he played in Hey Ram!” she says. Pooja’s role as Kamal’s wife in Vishwaroopam is bound to have an impact on her career.

The best part, she says, is she landed the role in just a week’s time. The actor, who after graduating in Political Science and Finance joined the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, says, “My manager told me Kamal Haasan was interested in casting me in a movie and I immediately said ‘yes’. I was in New York then and spoke to Kamal on Skype. He said ‘my team will get in touch with you and I’ll see you in Chennai soon.’ And seven days later I was here. They gave me five pages of dialogue to deliver and I was on board before I knew it.”

Chennai is not new to Pooja. She earlier acted in a Tamil film Kadhal Rojave, a remake of Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahin. “I was hosting the Miss World competition in Bangalore when the film’s producer K.R. spotted me and offered me the role. Now I am back again for Vishwaroopam. I think I have a connect with this city. It keeps calling me back.”

The better half in Vishwaroopam

I play a nuclear oncologist, who is keen on finding alternative ways to cure cancer. She marries Vishwanath, a dance teacher, and eventually discovers herself through him.

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