Whether she has come back from a sabbatical or not, Manisha Koirala, when she comes on screen, is always on top of her game. That's why I may not remember Manisha but Radha, Rajjo, Shaila Bano, Annie and Meghna. There is an intangible and a magical quality that you can never miss in a Manisha Koirala performance. It's delicate. It's tough. It's real. She shows heart, pride and desperation, a portrayal that only comes from an actress with immense talent and one who is never afraid to take a risk. Yes, I instantly fell in love with Rajjo from
, and such was the effect on me that this monsoon, the first song that I sang was '
'. It's tough not to fall head over heels for Manisha. How wonderful it is to have you back on screen darling! In this Part 2 no-holds-barred special, the actress opens up about RGV's lost charm, her triumph to work with Salman, Aamir and Shah Rukh Khan and how is it to work with kids today.
What? Not at all. Someone who has got the charm never loses it. There's always a good time and there are bad times. People like to praise a person if he or she is going through a good phase and then they pull them down in their bad times. I have been through such a phase. Now that I have taken a sabbatical, I can see things much more clearly and understand what you are saying. RGV is a genius. He is a great filmmaker and he will come out with something brilliant one day. One can't say he has lost the plot. He is a gem. He will keep shining. Now all he needs is a big hit.
The two directors I've noticed very closely as far as their cinema is concerned are Raj Kumar Hirani and Anurag Kashyap. Hirani is too real. He still has a very traditional way of telling stories but it appeals to every common man in this country and abroad. He blends his stories so beautifully. Anurag Kashyap jumps from subject to subject. I adored his version of Devdas -
. I loved the film. Anurag may touch a dark subject and still make it look glamorous. I like that quality in him. Even a director like Tigmanshu Dhulia is wonderful and brings a different approach in telling stories and executing them. Our cinema is now blessed with diversity from such directors.
I've worked with kids before. First time I worked with the brat pack was in
(laughs). But honestly, I found the kid in
to be much brighter and RGV knew how much to extract from the girl. The kids in
gave Mani Ratnam a lot of hassle. We were working for eighteen hours a day and we were all on the edge. But now-a-days, children are much more trained about cinema and are too natural in front of the camera.
You are so right. When anyone talks about any movie, they only talk in money. It's weird. If one is only looking at money making from cinema, then the soul of cinema will suffer. It's a creative medium and a lot of people give their heart and soul and sweat to it. It can't be only looked upon as a money making machine. We can't fault it. If someone is looking at only profiting, then they should join some business school or any corporate business firm.
He has become a really nice human being, not that he wasn't back then (laughs). I wasn't surprised when he started his organisation called Being Human. His confidence is showing a lot these days. I've seen him take off his shirt if he spotted a beggar and give it to him. That's Salman Khan. He has a big heart. I've done movies and shows with him. I recall the time when I told him 'I will not perform if I don't get paid', and Salman said, 'Let's perform Manisha. That guy doesn't have money right now but he needs us and that way he will earn and pay us'. Such was Salman's thinking and even today he is what he was. I've only seen a good side in Salman despite what the rest of the world says.
Shah Rukh Khan is super intelligent. He knows what to do, what to say, when to say. He would make everyone comfortable. He has a lot of charisma in him. Everyone will love him. He will have chai with the spot boys by sitting on the floor. He has a great quality in him that stands out from the rest of the actors. He is humble.
He is really committed. Before he does anything, he analyses a lot. He sees all the sides of the coin. He loves discussing one scene for hours. That's his involvement and shows his commitment to work. We used to love sitting around with him, me, Mansoor Khan and all and seeing him talk was a learning experience.
Today we don't get to see such actors, trust me. Working with all three has been a dream come true and I've made friends for life. If you ask me, amongst the three Khans, Aamir is the best actor.