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Versatile and feisty

Y. SUNITA CHOWDHARY
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Chat Ashwini Kalsekar works on her Telugu connection through films

Ashwini Kalsekar has a strong Telugu connection, she is married to actor Murali Sharma who hails from Guntur. The lady with lovely eyes and a smile that spells warmth, can easily turn wicked and feisty like Alakananda's (Tamanna) aunt in Badrinath or strong-willed and controlled as Inspector Anjali Sinha who beats Bukka Reddy (Abhimanyu Singh) to pulp in Rakta Charitra . In real life too, she's strong and tomboyish, not docile or subdued.

“I'm emotional for the family, not for the world,” says Ashwini who credits her realistic performance of a cop to her television show CID in which she worked for seven years. There she was trained to hold a gun, sport the right tough attitude etc. She had been quite slim in Rakta Charitra but seemed heavier in Badrinath . The actor agrees, explaining that she had a cervical slip disc and was bedridden, under heavy medication.

All praise for Ramgopal Verma, she describes him as someone who is technically sound and has a knack of picking up the right expression from an actor. After working with him and moving on to the next film and director, actors tend to feel dissatisfied, as they expect the same level of work culture from others. V.V. Vinayak had met her after seeing Phoonk with Ramgopal Verma and wanted her on board. She is aware that any outsider who comes to the industry to work is not allowed to dub, but like Sayaji Shinde, she considers herself lucky to dub for herself in Badrinath .

“I struggled with one particular dialogue Yentey Vaguthunnav and the sound engineer worked with me pretty hard to get it right. During the shoot I would think in Hindi and English and when the camera rolled I would speak Telugu and people would say it didn't sound like Telugu, then I would lose my confidence a bit. I was like an irritating guest perpetually nagging the director on the sets.”

It was an ordeal, she avers but heaps praise on Hyderabad and its people. She is new to the movies but not to the city as has always accompanied her husband while he was shooting for Athidi, Kantri but never went much to the sets.

She loves to explore the city, its food and has visited many joints but is particularly fond of Ramoji Film City. Aswhini and Murali knew each other for five and half years before they decided to get married. Both of them eat, drink and breathe acting but are completely different in approach when it comes to acting. She says, “Murali stays in line, you can see the consistency throughout, whereas I get loud in some scenes and I can go beyond a parameter but we have formed a mutual admiration club and forget food and family when it comes to work.”

Ashwini is looking forward to work in more Telugu films but as of now she is busy with a film being directed by Milind Ukey in which she plays a lawyer. It is a court drama about a poor woman fighting a case. There is another one with Suniel Shetty and Govinda.

Y. SUNITA CHOWDHARY

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