She is known for her bold image in Bollywood, but dusky beauty Bipasha Basu will now be seen in a slew of non-commercial films like the Bengali Shob Charitro Kalponik, Pankh and Lamhaa. She insists she is not making any special attempts to change her image and would love to do more Bengali films if they are interesting.
"I like to do films that are entertainers, glamorous, fun, action and definitely realistic. There is no effort that I am putting towards an image change with non-commercial films. I just feel that in the Hindi film industry, where you look in a particular manner, people consider your USP as something and you get a little typecast," Bipasha told IANS in a telephone interview from Mumbai.
"But I'm not trying to break any typecast. It's just that within the given limitations, I'm trying to push and taste everything a little bit," she added.
Bipasha plays a Kashmiri girl in director Rahul Dholakia's Lamhaa, has a supporting role in arthouse film Pankh' and in her just released Bengali film debut she plays a typical sari-wearing Bengali woman.
Asked if Shob Charitro... marks her entry into regional cinema, she said: "I don't like to do films where I don't understand the language; so I don't know about other regional films. I tried doing a Telugu film (2002) and a guest appearance in a Tamil movie (2005), but it was the toughest thing I've ever done.
"But Bengali films...for sure because I know the language... I'd love it if there are some interesting films or a filmmaker who would love to make one...they are more than welcome to approach me and I'd love to do it," she added.
Produced by Big Pictures, Shob Charitro... has been written and directed by Rituparno Ghosh and also stars Prasenjit, Jisshu Sengupta, Pauli Dam and Sohag Sen.
The film shows the journey of Bipasha's character into the life of her late poet husband through his poetry.
Shob Charitro... was also screened in the Panorama Section of the 2009 Durban Film Festival and marketed at the 62nd Cannes International Film Festival.
Though it was her first Bengali venture, the 30-year-old didn't find any difficulties essaying the role.
"Ritu-da asked me to get into the typical Bengali woman mode for the character with the sari-and-blouse and body language, etc... it was not at all difficult for me as I have grown up watching my mother like that.
"For the language, it was very easy because it's definitely the Bengali I speak at home and understand. Apart from that there is also a lot of English in the film as my character speaks both," added Bipasha, who became an overnight sensation in Bollywood with the 2003 hit Jism.
Bipasha was all praise for the director.
"Ritu-da's films work on various levels and not just one level. When he narrated the script to me, I was really curious as to how he plans to do it because it sounded really tough. But when we shot the film and I actually performed, it was really effortless.
"He guides you well and the whole film flows and tells you a beautiful story of romance, realism, marriage and all kinds of emotions like problems with your partner and when you fall in love... and he uses poetry as a very strong tool in it," she explained.
Shob Charitro..., Bipasha says, isn't a commercial entertainer.
"It is very deep and very beautiful. It was very different for me too but I truly liked it and enjoyed the process of making this film," said the actress.
Apart from Lamha and Pankh, Bipasha will also be seen in All The Best, a comic entertainer.