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It was emotionally taxing to play Maria, says Mahi

Mumbai: For Mahi Gill, who essays the role of Maria Susairaj in Ram Gopal Varma`s upcoming film `Not A Love Story`, it was difficult and taxing to portray the real life character of the Kannada actress, who recently walked free in the Neeraj Grover murder case.

"I have also witnessed and experienced the struggling period and so had Maria. So the struggling sequences were not difficult. But the sequences after the murder and its aftermath…to deal with it…was difficult for me. But Ramu sir was very helpful," Mahi said, after launching a promotional song for the film here.

Directed by Varma, `Not a Love Story` is a crime thriller based on the gruesome murder of television executive Neeraj Grover that led to the arrest of Maria and former navy officer Emile Jerome.

Mahi said she related to her character in the first half of the film because she has also come from outside Mumbai and struggled a lot to become an actress but her character in second half was "very difficult to relate with and was emotionally very taxing."

Mahi, who is best known for her role of Paro in Anurag Kashyap`s critically acclaimed Hindi film `Dev D` says, "When he (Ramu) told me about the film….about the role…I found it very challenging."

"We had shot in the same building but different rooms like the incident happened in room no 201 and we shot in 1501 so we had this weird…creepy feeling that how the incident would have taken place in such a small room and we used to talk a lot about it as well," she said.

The film also stars Deepak Dobriyal and Ajay Gehi in pivotal roles.

On May 7, 2008, Grover was killed at Maria`s flat in Dheeraj Solitaire in suburban Malad by her enraged fiance Jerome. After the murder, the couple chopped the victim`s body and stuffed it in bags and dumped it in the jungles of Manor, in Thane district. The film releases on August 19.

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