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`Reddy' for action

Sriya Reddy is on Cloud Nine after her recent movie, Bharatchandran IPS, became a success, finds VIJAY GEORGE



SMELL OF SUCCESS Sriya Reddy comfortable on small and big screens

In the two-hour odd saga, her presence is there for `just over ten to twelve minutes', on her own assessment. But Sriya Reddy believes that she has made quite an impression in that rather short span as the leading lady of Ranji Panikkar's `Bharat Chandran IPS'. The film has set the cash registers ringing right from the moment it had hit the theatres. For the hugely popular VJ of the Southern Spice (SS) Music channel, things are happening well. She has recently hosted the South Indian Filmfare awards function with Nikhil Chinnappa.

Sriya is already being compared to Vijayasanti, thanks to her cop-act in `Bharat Chandran IPS'. Did she hear about that? "Of course, I did. And I was thinking like `Oh my god, it's not fair... '. She is a big star and has done so many films. I have just started," sallies Sriya.

After films like `Apudapudu' in Telugu and `19 Revolutions' in English, Sriya has done two more Malayalam films, before `Bharat Chandran IPS' : `Black' with Mammootty and `Oraal' with Mukesh.

Commissioner

Ranji's offer for the role came while she was getting ready to go to London. "He told me that it's a police story and he wanted me to decide on doing the film after watching `Commissioner', its prequel. I saw it during the journey. Though I didn't understand most of the dialogues in it, I just loved what I saw. Also, I always wanted to play a cop."

Ranji was making his debut as a director and Suresh Gopi was `just out of a hiatus'. With all those things, was the atmosphere on the sets pretty tense? "Not at all. It was fun. Perhaps I was the only one in the set who remained serious most of the time, glued on to my iPod. Ranji and Suresh Gopi kept on asking me if I was not feeling comfortable there. I too had a great time on the sets but it's just that I prefer to remain serious when I am working."

Was she worried about the length of her role? "Frankly, yes. But I knew that once the film clicks, I'd have another hit under my name. Again, all my friends who have seen the movie say that I looked quite sexy in the police gear."

For all of you who have been wondering how she maintains her "almost pencil thin figure", here are some of Sriya's beauty tips. A fitness freak, she believes that "keeping fit is absolutely important" for her. Sriya has been an athlete and her father, Bharath Reddy is an ex-cricketer who has kept wickets for India. "I toil it out in the gym for two hours daily." She is very careful about her diet too. "No rice or chappathis for me. I don't eat carbohydrates. I live on proteins." And she takes no food after six in the evening. She will have just fruits and milk.Though she is regarded generally as "too westernized", Sriya believes that she can be quite convincing as a Malayali girl, "as I have the same sensibilities as a girl living here."

Her "thoroughly de-glamourised look in `Black' came as a surprise for many. "I just loved that look of mine in `Black'," she flashes a pearly grin. In real life, Sriya is "absolutely fashion conscious." Fashion, to her, "is having an impressive personality, fabulous attitude, great body and a cool mind." She loves wearing designer labels and hate people who "dress up as if they are just out of bed."

She is all praise for Mammootty, her hero in `Black', who "keeps amazingly fit and is a wonderful person to work with. He has a great sense of humour." Sriya also feels that "Meera Jasmine is a fabulous actress. She is the one to watch out for."

Sriya loves Malayalam films and has been learning the lingo for some time now, as she is getting loads of offers from this part of the world. "But I am careful in choosing my films and not jumping on to every offer that come my way." She has a few Telugu projects and an English movie, on the career front.

How does she manage to find time in between her rather busy stint as a VJ? "The channel has been extremely supportive. They have allowed me to go whenever I had the shooting of my films." Now she hosts `Connect' and `Lifestyle' in SS Music.

For all her fans out here, with the arrival of Onam, she plans to appear on the channel dressed up in Malayali costumes. "It's my kind of showing admiration for this wonderful land," smiles the gorgeous Sriya.

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