An Open Letter To Surveen Chawla


Dear Surveen

It’s not always that a film runs on the strength of a newcomer. It’s very rare. In that sense, you have arrived at the Box Office. The weekend collection, I believe, is Rs 15 crore plus, and this is huge returns for a film which boasts of no big stars and no ‘over-the-top’ ‘in-your-face’ promotion’.

In fact, I was surprised when I did not read any ‘paid stories’ about Hate Story 2, in a leading English supplement. Every production house takes this route. And inspite of that, the movie has done decent business. That has to be a first in the industry. Also goes to show that a film well-made with good performances will always find its audience.


Congratulations, once again on a well-essayed character. You also have to thank Sushant Singh and Neha Kaul for providing excellent support to your character. Of course, the music too needs special mention. It’s always a team that wins; never an individual.

But in this case, you stood head and shoulders above the rest. The film rested on your ability to deliver strongly. A few mistakes in crucial scenes would have thrown the film off balance. You took the responsibility and delivered in style. There was variety in your performance — vulnerable, vengeance, sexy. All three elements delivered with a knock-out punch! Moreover, you even overshadowed Sunny Leone, who was hauled onto the audience for a ‘recharge’. What a waste of time, and money!



Television has given us some big stars on screen, SRK being one. No, I am not comparing you to him. There’s still a long, long way to go. But yes, you have shown immense promise to help filmmakers make decisions to cast you without blinking an eyelid. Because your presence (based on BO collections), is sure to guarantee returns. That is how the business of films works.

While you may have cleared the first hurdle, the second is what will be a bigger challenge; getting and choosing the right roles. There are not many filmmakers who make female-oriented movies. Your character, Sonika, was completely heroine-driven.

Hopefully, with heroine-oriented films doing big business (Kangana Ranaut’s Queen was the last to rope in the moolah. It crossed the Rs 60-crore mark in five weeks, while Kahaani, the Vidya-Balan starrer crossed the Rs 75-crore mark), there will be many such roles in the offing. There’s money in this segment for people willing to invest! And the returns are huge.


As I write to you, I am reminded of another television star who ‘rocked’ in her debut film. She too showed immense promise. The last I saw her on screen essaying the character of a ‘call girl’ from Mira Road in Ek Villian. Such a waste of talent. I am talking about Prachi Desai. Sushant Singh Rajput is another television star who has made his mark, and one to look out for.

You have gotten off to a roaring start; a start which many dream of. You also have bright days ahead of you, not to mention big banners wanting to sign you.

God Bless You

Martin D’Souza

(This weekly column tries to be as honest as honest can be…)




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