Beauty with brains is how Anjali Patil is known in the film circles and that’s not without a reason. While the actor debuted in Delhi In a Day, a film that drew attention to the plight of domestic helps in Delhi and even won an award for her performance in a Sinhalese film, it was her naxalite act in Prakash Jha’s directorial, Chakravyuh that shot her to fame.
Success has now encouraged Anjali to spread her wings in Kannada,Telugu and Malayalam industries. She is currently in Bangalore shooting for her maiden Kannada film, Apna Desh. “I have just finished shooting a song with Raghu Mukherjee and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. What made everything even more beautiful was the picturesque locations.” So, dancing around trees is not something that she is averse to. “If anything I enjoy dancing. In fact I am a Kathak dancer and dance is something that’s in built. Also it’s wrong for anyone to assume that award-winning actresses or those known more for their performances don’t enjoy doing glamorous roles. In fact one of my upcoming Hindi flicks will see me essay one such role even. I do want to do a couple of glam doll roles. As an actor versatility is what is expected from you,” she says and adds that’s why she had a great time dancing for a peppy number in Apna Desh.
So what is the film about? “I play this tribal girl who is the only graduate in her community. The best part about this film is that I get to act alongside my favourite playwright, Girish Karnad.”
Speaking of plays, Anjali’s first love still remains theatre. She is a National School of Drama pass out and not wanting to give up her theatre links, she is even planning to direct Macbeth at some point. But it looks like her direction plans will take a backseat as she has a slew of Hindi projects including two Prakash Jha films and a Hollywood film to complete — projects that she is not allowed to talk about currently. Her Malayalam-Telugu bilingual on human trafficking on the other hand is almost ready for release.”The Kerala CM recently saw Ente, the Malayalam version. He was really impressed with the story,” she says. Now having entered the Kannada,Telugu and Malayalam industries, does she have her eyes set on Tamil films? “I believe in taking life as it comes. In fact my life is full of twists and turns just like the beautiful Western Ghats. I feel each turn will bring with it something exciting. Instead of thinking too much about what the future holds, I’d rather live in and enjoy the present.”
We tell her she sounds too philosophical for her age and she in good humour replies, “Oh! If films would not have happened I would have been a monk and if my parents had their way, a government servant!”