Mumbai: Maria Susairaj's infamy could just get her the acting roles that brought her to Mumbai three years ago. Ram Gopal Verma has rolled the first dice. Carlos Santana may have been strumming for another Maria when he croons about her "living the life just like a movie star", but what of Maria Susairaj? She was a struggling Kannada actress when she befriended Neeraj Grover, allegedly in the hope of entrenching herself in show business, on the silver screen or the small.

Accused of Grover's death in 2008, she was let off the charge of murder on last Thursday and is all set to walk free. In fact, it looks like she might even be closer than ever to realising her Bollywood dreams, after all.

Ram Gopal Varma has already expressed a desire to work with her. "Yes, I would want to take her in my next film, if she is willing. Sometimes, it is not really just about acting. It is the combination of popularity, curiosity etc. And I am sure with the kind of life that she has led behind bars, she must have emotionally matured enough to be a decent actress," says RGV.

Trade analyst Amod Mehra is pretty sure that the girl will get many offers. "There are many people in this industry who would want to cash in on the curiosity factor involving the girl. They want to capitalise on her popularity, no matter how it is gained. It is crazy but true. But the fact is, these kinds of personalities might get a break because of being notorious, but they are not really accepted by the general audience. When you have a negative image so strong, you can only do so much, may be a film or a reality show. But beyond that, there is no way of turning that general negative feeling to a good one," Mehra says.

The obvious buzz is that Maria will be approached to participate in the next season of reality TV show Bigg Boss. But a spokesperson from the channel said it is too soon to even speculate. "It is too early to say anything. Let her come out first," they said.

Earlier, Monica Bedi, linked as Abu Salem's girlfriend, was lapped up by Bigg Boss and some filmmakers soon after she was released from jail. But it didn't really work for her in the long run. The general sentiment is that Susairaj's movie career may not be any different. But hey, who knows.

Bhatt speaks

All I know is one ageless truth: when your product is not you, you emphasise on marketing. Merely because someone is in the headlines today is not reason enough to cast the person in a film. Even though public memory is short and today people may not remember yesterday's headlines.

This is one part. But if the person fits the character and the storyline, then she can be considered. Also, when the accused is exonerated by the court, then it's another thing. Besides, in all civilised societies, criminals are given a chance for rehabilitation. That is the other part.