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The Great Get Real Challenge

Today, more than ever before, heroines are opting for roles of substance and spleen. Vajir Singh picks 11 actresses who have dared to be decidedly different.

entertainment Updated: Oct 04, 2007 19:27 IST

At the end of the day, it's not about the big bucks but about the risks they take.. the diamond-hard performances that set them apart from the cosmetic softies. Today, more than ever before, young women are opting for roles of some substance and spleen, caring a hoot whether they're in arthouse or in the rabidly commercial. Vajir Singh picks 11 actresses who have dared to be decidedly different

There was a time when eyebrows were raised if Rekha or Hema Malini were spotted in movies which were not purely formulaic. Ditto for Madhuri Dixit. Some didn't even go anywhere close to the unconventional terrain – Mumtaz, for instance.

Today, the scene has altered. In fact, actresses are aware that it is the medium and low-budget movies which give them an opportunity to act.. and as it happens, reap awards. They need not necessarily be the hero's arm-jujubes.

Karisma and Kareena Kapoor have done it. Aishwarya Rai has dabbled in it. On occasions, Neha Dhupia fetches up in Ek Chaalis ki Last Local and is happily, into more. Sonali Kulkarni has established herself as an actress in Hindi as well as Marathi cinema, for whom the role counts more than the pay packet.

So here's zeroing down on the actresses who have taken on the Great Get Real Challenge:

1. Koel Purie
Kahaan se aayee tu?: Daughter of widely-respected journalist Aroon Purie (she doesn't like to talk about daddy insisting on being her own person), she started off as a production assistant on Deepa Mehta's Earth. She was spoken about in the same breath as Rahul Bose for long, but the relationship went kaput.
Will be remembered for: Rahul Bose's Everybody Says I'm Fine, the short feature Road to Ladakh, White Noise, Mixed Doubles.
Will not be remembered for
: Mera Dil Leke Dekho, Nazar.. performances as ridiculous as the roles.
Our take: Needs to create a buzz about herself, but not at Page 3 parties.
Coming Up: Breaking news

2. Gul Panag
Kahaan se aayee tu?: From an army background, she bagged the Miss India title and participated in the Miss Universe pageant. Will be remembered for: Sensibly bided her time instead of jumping into the glam-wham roles. Made a remarkable debut in Dhoop and followed this up with a bravura performance in Dor.. and an engaging one in Manorama Six Feet Under.
Will not be remembered for: Vikram Bhatt's Jurm.
Our take: She claims to have completed several films in the last ten months. Errr..but slow and steady wins the race, no?
Coming Up: Summer of 2007, Anubhav, Phir Zindagi, Hello.

3.
Tabu
Kahaan se aayee tu?: Needs no introduction. The high priestess of quality cinema
Will be remembered for: Maachis, Virasat, Chandni Bar, Astitva, Maqbool, Meenaxi: A Tale of Three Cities, The Namesake.
Will not be remembered for: Hawa, Jaal: The Trap, Fanaa
Our take:
Can excel in comedy.. going by Chachi 420 and Biwi No 1.. and can stop giving the most boring interviews in the world. Coming Up: Got to investigate this one.

4. Ayesha Dharker
Kahaan se aayee tu?: Daughter of Anil and Imtiaz Dharker.
Will be remembered for: Santosh Sivan's The Terrorist, stage musical Bombay Dreams, the just released The Loins of Punjab.
Will not be remembered for: A subsidiary part in Mistress of Spices.
Our take: Could do with some styling.
Coming Up: Could she let us know please?

5. Raima Sen
Kahaan se aayee tu?: Moon Moon Sen's daughter, Suchitra Sen's granddaughter, never mind the sister.
Will be remembered for: A delicately graceful performance in The Godmother followed up by Chokher Bali, Parineeta, Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd., Manorama Six Feet Under.
Will not be remembered for
: Fun2shh.. Dudes in the 10th Century, Dus.
Our take: Don't change.
Coming Up: Bits and Pieces, Japanese Wife.

6. Nandana Sen

Kahaan se aayee tu?:

Daughter of Amartya Sen and Nabanita Dev Sen.. doesn't talk about them too much.


Will be remembered for:

Black

.


Will not be remembered for

:

My Wife's Murder Tango Charlie, Marigold


Our take:

Spread the word around that you're around.


Coming Up:

Rang Rasiya.



7. Nandita Das


Kahaan se aayee tu?:

Daughter of painter Jatin Das and writer Varsha Das.With a Master's degree in social work, she began with a street theatre group.Works tirelessly for human rights issues.


Will be remembered for:

Fire, Earth 1947, Bhawandar.


Will not be remembered for

:

Aks, Ek Din 24 Ghante, Heads Ya Tails

.


Our take:

How about being more in Mumbai than in Delhi?


Coming Up:

Adoor Gopalakrishnan's

Kallante Makan



8. Sandhya Mridul


Kahaan se aayee tu?:

From Delhi, made an impact with the TV serial

Swabhimaam

, then

Saathiya

.


Will be remembered for:

Page

3, the stage play

Double

Deal

.


Will not be remembered for

:

Kuch Meetha Ho Jaaye, Deadline 24 Ghante


Our take:

No angst please.


Coming Up:

Aims to talent scout and do out- of- the-box creative work.



9. Konkona Sen Sharma


Kahaan se aayee tu?:

Daughter of Aparna Sen and writer Mukul Sharma, she debuted with the Bengali film

Ek Je Aachhe Kanya

.

Will be remembered for:

Mr and Mrs Iyer, Page 3, 15 Park Avenue, Omkara, Traffic Signal, Mixed Doubles, Life.. in a Metro

.


Will not be remembered for

:

Deadline 24 Ghante

.


Our take:

She's doing the right thing.


Coming Up:

Aaja Nachle, Laaga Chunari Mein Daag.

10. Ayesha Takia


Kahaan se aayee tu?:

Daughter of secretary Nishit Takia, she appeared in a music video. Debuted in

Tarzan

..

the

Wonder Car and Socha Na Tha,

back to back

.


Will be remembered for:

Dor, Yun Hota To..Kya Hota.


Will not be remembered for

:

Dil Maange More, Shaadi No 1, Home Delivery, Shaadi Se Pehle, Kya Love Story Hai, Fool and Final.

Our take:

Marriage? No marriage for a while? Questions, questions.


Coming Up:

No Smoking, De Taali, Tasveer, Wanted Dead and Alive.


11. Tulip Joshi


Kahaan se aayee tu?:

Participated in the Miss India Contest, was noticed by ad agencies and modelled for several high-end brands. Debuted in

Mere

Yaar ki Shaadi Hai.

Will be remembered for:

Matrubhoomi, Dhokha.


Will not be remembered for

:

Dil Maange More.


Our take:

There is potential.


Coming Up:

Shoonya, Hostel.

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