Shravanthi Sainath was happy dividing her time between school and Bharatnatyam classes, when she was plucked to star in Oscar-winning filmmaker Ang Lee's Life of Pi.
She now hopes to make a career in Bollywood.
Just 17, Sainath plays Pi's love interest in the film. The newcomer walked the red carpet at the Dubai International Film Festival here, her first outing outside the country to promote the film.
Understandably excited and nervous, Sainath said her dancing skills helped her land the role in the movie, which has Indian actors like Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Tabu and Adil Hussain in important roles.
"It is my first red carpet and it is absolutely memorable, something that I will cherish forever. I feel very blessed to have done my first film with Ang Lee," Sainath said.
"I am getting lot of offers for Indian films and I am a big fan of Bollywood but I am open to all kind of films. However, I want to keep up the standard and wait for the best," she added.
Sainath says she will finish school in about three months and then decide on a possible career in films.
Talking about being directed by the famous Taiwanese-American director, she said, "My brief was that the character is very composed. Lee's eyes shine when he looks at someone. His full focus is on you. Working with him was very delightful. He made us very comfortable."
Sainath's proud father, who walked the red carpet with his daughter, said he used to struggle hard to send her to dance classes when she was young.
"She has been learning classical dance from the age of five. Initially she used to cry before going to the dance class and I used to buy a chocolate to convince her. Today she is addicted to dancing," he added.