Trust Ms. Bhatt to have the courage to go ‘off the beaten track’ – She is Mahesh Bhatt’s daughter, after all. In an industry, and society, where ‘Fair & Lovely’ rules, and dusky actresses (read Kajol in ‘Dilwale’) choose to become almost unrecognizable in ‘gora’ avatars, Alia Bhatt has shown she’s a woman of substance by going three shades darker for her upcoming film.

In ‘Udta Punjab’, Alia plays the role of a Bihari girl, and to add credence to her character, she’s going to appear much darker than her natural skin tone. The other stars in the film are Shahid Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor-Khan. The contrast between ‘peaches and cream’ Kareena and a dark Alia Bhatt should be interesting to watch, but as far as acting is concerned, we can predict that Alia’s going to come out on top.

The crime-thriller is directed by Abishek Chaubey, who already has hits ‘Omkara’, ‘Ishqiya’ and ‘Dedh Ishqiya’ to his credit, and is set to release mid-June this year.

23-year-old Alia has been turning in acting performances, like Imtiaz Ali’s ‘Highway’, that are mature beyond her years, and ‘Udta Punjab’ promises to be another feather in her trendsetting cap.