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Sonali Kulkarni: From oblivion to limelight
03rd Mar 2001   15.30 IST
By N K Deoshi  


This beautiful actress has always steered clear of the Bollywood limelight while at the same time winning accolades for her acting skills in parallel cinema.

Sonali Kulkarni, a theater artist, classical dancer and an immensely talented actress, is finally getting her due as she makes her presence felt in Bollywood.

A Satyadev Dubey protégé, Sonali has been hooked on to the creative process ever since she began theatre workshops under her mentor some five years ago. Her skills honed, she soon forayed into the world of sensible cinema with Girish Karnad's Cheluvi. Sonali followed it with intense performances in Jabber Patel's Mukta, Amol Palekar's Daayra, and later on Kairee, and the acclaimed Doghi for which she even won a National Award.

All this while Sonali has been elusive to limelight. Most of her films were screened at festivals and never got much of an exposure with the masses. Now Bollywood seems to have discovered Sonali. Her riveting performance opposite Sanjay Dutt in Vinod Chopra's Mission Kashmir has not gone unnoticed despite the little footage she had in the film. And presently Sonali has all the reasons to be euphoric as her hands are full of plum projects that pitch her opposite some of the leading men in Bollywood.

Just around the corner is Ram Gopal Varma production Pyar Tune Kya Kiya in which she plays wife to Fardeen Khan. Then there is Junoon with Chandrachud and Farhan Akhtar's directorial debut Dil Chahta Hai opposite Saif Ali Khan.

From theatre to regional films and now to Bollywood biggies Sonali sure has come a long way.