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Chuck Russell's Junglee is like my first child: Asha Bhat- Cinema express

My cinematic journey is from Bhadravati to Bollywood, via Hollywood: Asha Bhat

The beauty pageant winner-turned-actor opens up about her debut 

Published: 07th March 2019

The first Indian to win the Miss Supranational pageant, Asha Bhat from Karnataka, is making her debut in Hindi with Junglee.  And she has been paired opposite Vidyut Jammwal in the film.  

The film, produced by Junglee Pictures, will have a western connect as the action-thriller is directed by American filmmaker Chuck Russell. 

The beauty pageant winner is now gearing to test the waters in the silver screen, and says that entering cinema was a collective decision made by her family. “My family felt that me being a dancer, singer, and having a background in theatre, I should try films,” she says, adding that she had to undergo a lot of training when Junglee came her way. “I started taking coaching and working on martial arts and dancing.” 

About working with Chuck Russell, Asha, says, "He has launched the likes of Cameron Diaz and Dwayne Johnson. He directed the film, The Mask, which was an Oscar nominee. I am blessed to be part of a film like this, I hadn’t imagined this even in my wildest dreams. The makers have produced films like Raazi, Bareilly Ki Barfi, and national award-winning Talvar. A new face couldn't have got a better start. Vidyut has been an amazing and patient co-star. It’s been a great experience.”

Though Asha claims that offers have been pouring in, she has chosen to wait for the release of Junglee. “I want to concentrate on the result of Junglee, as I consider the film to be my first child. I've been waiting for this day since 2017. Getting into Bollywood without a mentor has not been easy for me. It was a new place altogether, and creating a name here has been quite tough. I want my work to do the talking.”

When quizzed about her debut in Kannada, Asha says  “When I won the pageant, I had to sign a contract which demanded me to move to Mumbai. That's the reason why I haven't got many offers from Kannada. But my emotional attachment to my land has always been intact.”

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