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Forget the bespectacled Radhika of the 'Hum Paanch' show, the demure Lalita of 'Parineeta' or even the rustic Krishna of 'Ishqiya'! An evolved Vidya Balan paints 'The Dirty Picture' red with her killer pout, sultry dance, deep cleavage and her bold ways.
When producer Ekta Kapoor said, "I would be surprised if I don't get unbelievable critical acclaim for 'Dirty Picture' and a National Award for my actress, Vidya Balan", she sure didn't mean it for nothing.
The story of southern sex siren Silk Smitha - her rise as a glamour girl thanks to her bold and semi-nude roles in movies, and her gradual fall owing to new actresses in the industry, her financial crisis and personal problems - 'The Dirty Picture' is set to have Vidya at her glamorous, boldest and sultry best.
If the first poster of the film, with Vidya showing off her cleavage in an itsy bitsy red blouse, didn't spell fire, the trailer sure makes you go 'Ooh la la' - in tune with disco king Bappi Lahiri's spicy rendition of a song which says 'Tu hai meri fantasy...'.
The Munnis and the Sheilas of Bollywood can take a backseat for a while because the 33-year-old Vidya, even with her not so washboard abs, might just become every man's fantasy with her titillating moves, curvaceous frame, playfulness, and sensuous ways in her scenes with Naseeruddin Shah, Tusshar Kapoor and Bollywood's very own serial kisser Emraan Hashmi.
Perhaps what the trailer misses is the dark side of Silk Smitha's story, which the film is expected to highlight. But it does its job and it does it well.
It's been just six years since Vidya made her Bollywood debut with 'Parineeta', but in the short period, the actress showed her fearless streak by roles that are as different as chalk and cheese like 'Ishqiya' and 'Paa'.
Her choice of unconventional scripts with experimental roles that challenge the actor in her has continued to set an example of what it takes to strike the right balance between commercial and parallel cinema.
If it was a lonely lover in her first movie, Bengali project 'Bhalo Theko', Vidya went on to show her subtle and romantic side in 'Parineeta'. In 'Lage Raho Munnabhai', she was seen in a conventional role, but she played it unconventionally.
Her performance in 'Guru' as a multiple sclerosis patient may have been short, but it didn't go unnoticed. Her films 'Salaam-e-Ishq', 'Heyy Babyy' and 'Kismat Konnection' may not have done much to boost her film career, but Vidya remained dauntless.
She broke all doubts about her dancing skills through her performance on the song 'Ami je tomar' in 'Bhool Bhulaiyaa'.
For a brief period, her fashion choices were the talk of the town and much criticised, but Vidya kept to her work and when she returned as single mother in 'Paa', her high-voltage performance shut the wagging tongues.
'Ishqiya' further strengthened filmmakers' belief in her versatility and capacity as an actor. In Abhishek Chaubey's film, Vidya convincingly played a conniving and manipulative woman who doesn't shy away from using her sexuality to fulfil her goals.
And then 'No One Killed Jessica' saw her in a completely different avatar. Based on the real-life Jessica Lall murder case, the movie saw her as a grieving sister who runs from pillar to post to get justice for her sister.
After entertaining viewers with her plain Jane look, Vidya has now picked up a contrasting role in 'The Dirty Picture'. She oozes oomph like never before and one wonders if the movie will be Vidya's next stepping stone to her ever-rising success story.
Directed by Milan Luthria, the film will release Dec 2, which is Silk Smitha's birthday.
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