She had just finished her fashion design course from the National Institute of Fashion Design in Delhi, when Neha Sharma landed her first film opposite politician Chiranjeevi’s son Ram Charan Teja in Chirutha. But the 2007 film, which released her in the Tollywood film industry happened by chance. “I take things as they come. I’ve never planned my career,” says Sharma, who is currently waiting to see how audiences judge her in her forthcoming Bollywood debut, Crook.
The film, in which she stars opposite Emraan Hashmi, deals with the racist attacks against Indians in Australia. “It’s not preachy. And it doesn’t dig deep into the racism bit of it. That’s just the backdrop. I play the role of an Indian girl, brought up in Australia, who is trying to bridge relations between people from the two countries,” says Sharma.
Having done three films in the past, Sharma can clearly make a distinction between working in the two industries — Bollywood and Tollywood. “Initially, it is difficult learning lines of a language you don’t understand. When I do a Bollywood film, it’s more satisfying because I understand the language and can emote better.”
As for scoring a film under the Bhatt banner, she says, “The Bhatts offer a great launch pad. They’ve made some amazing films. Also, when I was offered the role, I had refused to kiss in the film, since most people hear Emraan’s name and think of his ‘serial kisser’ tag. I wanted to be known for my talent and acting.”