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BRAVE NEW WORLD: As Brett Lee steps into unchartered territory, can he survive as the star of romantic comedy unIndian?

MML

As a cricketer, Brett Lee has earned a reputation as one of the best, most respected and well-liked people in the history of the game. He has nothing to prove on that score. 

Yet whether his fame and celebrity – a term he hates – can carry a film is the big test he now faces. And he knows it.

Under the direction of Anupam Sharma, Lee plays an English teacher who falls in love with an Indian girl (played by veteran actress Tannishtha Chatterjee).

The film is not much chop. Though likeable, light and upbeat, it’s too long, not all that funny and the chasm between an experienced actor such as Chatterjee and an inexperienced one such as Lee is a tad too glaring.

But what do critics matter? For Lee this is an adventure, an opportunity to connect with a new audience.

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Director Anupam Sharma with his star

Now retired from the game – which he says he is not a huge fan of – Lee is embracing the next phase of his career with an enthusiasm that graces almost every thing he utters.

Aware that his staggering achievements in cricket count for nothing in this new realm, he sounds more excited than frightened. Yes, he’s in a highly vulnerable place, but he put himself there. Lee is a risk taker, forever dedicated to ‘having a crack’.

Warm, honest and modest, Lee sat down with his director for an extended chat, first about the film, then about his life beyond cricket, his values and how he finds himself at this mid-point in his career.

It’s one of the most fun interviews we’ve had so far this year, hence it runs a little longer than usual.

Please enjoy.

For the Brett Lee interview, please click here:

To view a trailer for the film, please click here:

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