Anyone making their debut as the second lead in a John Abraham starrer, Jhootha Hi Sahi in this case, would at least expect to be part of the film posters. If that person were a singer, they’d also be doubly upset for not getting to sing a single line in the movie. And to top it all, not getting along with the director Abbas Tyrewalla’s wife and lead actor of the film, Pakhi, did not help matters. But Manasi Scott isn’t perturbed. She’s already made her presence felt in the promos as the sassy gal who slaps the hunk.
For someone who’s been singing since the age of eight and has even performed a number for Sanjay Gupta’s Acid Factory (2009), it’s surprising that she opted to play the second fiddle in the rom-com that releases this Friday.
“I did think of venturing into acting earlier, but I got pregnant and decided to bide my time,” says Scott, adding that when Tyrewalla offered her the role, she didn’t need to think twice. Her son Zephan is four now and her husband, Craig, took care of him while she was away shooting.
“So what if it’s a second lead?” she counters, reiterating that hers is a strong role. “I’ve known Abbas for a while now. And after seeing his Jaane Tu… Yaa Jaane Naa (2008), I didn’t need to hear the script to be part of Jhootha Hi Sahi. A R Rahman composing for the film was another reason for me take it up,” she says. Probe her why she’s not singing in the film, and she feels that that question is for the director and maestro to answer.
Moving on to her ‘slapping John’ sequence, Scott concedes that initially she had second thoughts and asked the director if they could cheat it. “Abbas didn’t believe in that, as it would dilute the impact of the scene,” she says, and also praises her co-star for his co-operation in filming the scene.
Unlike Abraham, whom she continues to share a friendly rapport with, despite the slap, Scott didn’t get along even half as well with Pakhi. Admitting that they’re “not the best of friends,” she reveals that things cooled down after the director’s intervention. “Abbas told me not to give any importance to third person accounts, which were creating the problems. And I felt very stupid about the whole issue, so I just let it go,” she shrugs, but is quick to jest, “Maybe that’s why I’m not in the posters.”
Interestingly, Scott is in no hurry to take up any offers coming her way.
“I want to see how my performance in Jhootha Hi Sahi is received, and depending on that feedback I will decide what films and characters I should take up next,” she concludes.