Actor Mahie Gill, whose role in Ram Gopal Varma’s Not a Love Story is inspired by Neeraj Grover murder co-accused Maria Susairaj, says it felt freaky to shoot just a couple of houses away from the murder spot, and with one of Susairaj’s neighbours.
The team shot in Dheeraj Solitaire Building, the apartment complex where the crime took place. “The murder took place in house number 201 and we shot in 1501. I got a weird feeling the moment I saw the place from a distance. Throughout the shoot, I used to wonder how the crime took place in such a small place, and how no one heard anything.”
Initially, Gill wanted to meet Susairaj “and see her body language”, but she later “gave up the idea”. “I have done method acting and I thought I should do the role my way.” RGV had, however, roped in Maria’s neighbour Subhash for a role in the film and he used to tell Mahie about Susairaj’s personality. “Subhash told me how she behaved, how she spoke and about her general mannerism. He told me how she was so normal after the incident,” she says.
While Ramu may have apologised to the actor for the lovemaking scenes, she maintains she had no trouble doing them. “Later, we laughed about it,” she says. Incidentally, when Ramu had offered her the film, Mahie was reading an article about Maria. “It was about her fighting with an inmate in jail and that’s when he called,” she says, adding, “In fact, when the case came to light in 2008, I was looking for a house in Mumbai and people had stopped renting out to single women because of it. My sister-in-law and brother had to rent the house for me,” she says. The movie opens on August 19.
"I can't judge her. I didn't know her. We should respect the court's verdict. Nobody knows what happened that night."
On lovemaking scenes
Ramu is a shy person and he probably felt sorry that he was making me do those scenes..like poor girl...I am making her do this, so he sent me a message saying,'Sorry' and I said, 'what for', so he said, 'for the retakes'."Later, we laughed about it," she says.
On challenges of the role
It is about a struggling actor and initially we have all been through that stage. Later, the murder and the interrogation scenes were difficult to do.