Even before her first film Aladin releases this Diwali, debutant actress Jacqueline Fernandez has caught the fancy of prominent directors like Siddharth Anand and Tarun Mansukhani, who are seriously considering signing the former Miss Sri Lanka for their future projects.
"Yes, Jacqueline indeed has great potential, something that I could make out the moment I saw a couple of songs that she has done in the film. Though our talks are currently in a very preliminary stage, I would love to work with her," Siddharth Anand of Salaam Namaste fame told IANS.
A source close to Anand said: "Siddharth's movies have primarily been youth-centric with emphasis on fun, music and celebration. He himself is quite young and a similar exuberance is seen in the films he does. Even for his next project, he felt that Jacqueline would be the right fit since she is a young newcomer and brings with her a lot of promise."
And Anand has found a supporter in Sujoy Ghosh, who is launching Jacqueline with Aladin.
"Siddharth is a close friend and we bounce off story ideas to each other on a regular basis. We have also never shied away from showing each other the rushes of our films.
"In one such meeting, Siddharth happened to see some of Jacqueline's portions from Aladin and was quite impressed with her exotic looks as well. He was even more impressed by her confidence considering Aladin is her debut film," Ghosh said.
Tarun Mansukhani, who made a splash with Dostana, is expected to start another light hearted entertainer soon. He too seems to be impressed with Jacqueline's screen presence.
"For me, it's not just the matter of Jacqueline showing immense confidence in her first ever movie, but the fact that she has very good screen presence and her look can be tweaked around being Indian or Western as per the demand of the situation. For me, that's her biggest selling point," Mansukhani told IANS.
While the Sri Lankan beuaty is yet to get concrete offers, she is certainly making her presence felt in the film industry.
Jacqueline, who was crowned Miss Sri Lanka in 2006, has been academically inclined as well - apparent from her degree in Media and Communications from Sydney, Australia.
Ambitious to the core, she had once stated: "Being independent and accomplished was imperative to me and I always demanded the best of myself. Perfectionism is my strongest asset."
That's something which is clear from her choice for her debut film Aladin, which is a co-production of Eros and Ghosh's Boundscript and stars none other than Amitabh Bachchan and Sanjay Dutt along with Riteish Deshmukh.
"Well, the journey has just begun. Last one year was quite happening but now it is going to be even more exciting times with Aladin being round the corner," said Jacqueline.
She follows Aladin with Milap Zaveri's directorial debut. She has also been approached by several brands for endorsements.
(Joginder Tuteja can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org )