Parliamentarian-actress Hema Malini rubbishes tattles about her daughter Esha deol’s supposed facelift and talks political rallies with Rachana Dubey.
A few days ago, news flashed that Esha Deol had undergone facelift and body enhancement treatments.. for which she had been in hibernation at a rehab centre for over six months. As always, an anonymous source was the informer. <b1>
Dressed in a dazzling yellow sari, Hema Malini, her mother and a member of the Rajya Sabha fumes, “What rubbish! It’s the same face and the same body. The press makes a story when it’s starved. My daughter has Dharamji (Dharmendra) and my genes. He’s handsome at his age and I think I’m fairly good looking too. So how can my child not be like us? She’s gifted with a beautiful face and a great body. Why would she have to undergo any corrective treatment? Stories are being made up because she stays miles away from the madding press.”
According to her, the media gets exasperated when Esha doesn’t come all out to comment on tittle-tattle about her in the industry. She says that there are incessant phone calls to speak to Esha from several tabloids and find out why has she been out of action.
And when she doesn’t reply, stories about her uplifted face and toned body are flashed without any confirmation from their side.
“Esha gets put off by the number of phone calls she gets for confirming silly stories. The media has to mend its ways to deal with artistes,” Malini adds.
The proud mother beams that her daughter doesn’t resort to what most actresses do.. get linked to their co-actors.
“I must thank God that Esha hasn’t taken that route to fame. She doesn’t have boyfriends or even boys who are her friends. She gets linked to all her co-actors but I know she’s clean. She will find a suitable man, ask my permission and marry him. I’m also on the look out for an appropriate groom for her,” says the eternal beauty. <b2>
She admits that she had advised Esha to decline movie offers with multiple heroines even if that meant waiting. She informs that Esha will not do just any random movie assignments now.
“My daughter is concentrating on her dance and exercise routines. That keeps her fit and fine. Botox and corrective surgeries are not for her age. Maybe after 40, some artistes need it.. that will never be my daughter,” states Malini.
Ask Malini, if her daughter or she will be part of Dharmendra’s home-production? She outright rejects the idea with a “No thanks. My daughters will focus on their careers.”
Once, it was buzzed that Ahana Deol will make her debut as a director and the movie will topline her mother and sister. Malini, with a shine in her eyes, says that her chhoti beti is more into fashion and styling than the movies.
“Ahana has loads of ideas. She’s the more hip and style conscious among us. She’s busy setting up her own fashion collection right now, which she will exhibit very soon. I’m glad she’s chosen something different,” says Hema Malini.
In rally time
The actress took a day’s break from her party’s countrywide political rallies to be in the city to shoot a promo for the televised version of Seeta aur Geeta for NDTV Imagine. Apparently, while rallying in Darjeeling, someone addressed her as Hemu.
Remind her and she asks, “Who tells you all this? I never heard anyone say that. The rallies all over the country have been quite satisfactory. I still have some more of those to do. The party was asking me to go to Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim.. but I refused because it would be mean too much exertion. So my last installment of campaigning happens in Punjab this week. Then I’m back to my stage shows.”
But are the rallies creating enough awareness, given that lavish political campaigns in the city had failed to draw the voters to the booths?
She cuts in, “Public’s seething discontent is so visible everywhere.. why single out Mumbai? The low turnout shows that people are angry.. they’re not happy with the current security and financial situation of the country. We’ve gone place-to-place telling people ‘matdaan kijiye, vote dijiye.’ They have made their thoughts clear by not voting and showing zero confidence in the current set-up.”
The topic of discussion shifts to the ‘new and improved’ Seeta aur Geeta featuring Anjori Alagh in Hema Malini’s shoes.
Malini, who’s always been averse to the idea of remakes, this time, has taken it positively: “I was surprised initially. But it’s not a bad deal because it’s on TV. If they did what Ramu (Ram Gopal Varma) did to Sholay, then I would have been upset.”
Malini states that she holds a role and a film like Seeta aur Geeta too close to her heart. She says her fans in Russia don’t know her name but when she goes there, they call her Zeeta aur Geeta.
Malini says that though she found Sridevi’s Chaalbaaz similar to Seeta aur Geeta, it had its own storyline and culmination. “Even in the show, they will not make it verbatim like the movie because it was made for three-hours of entertainment only.”
Ask her if she has met the new Seeta and Geeta (Anjori Alagh), Ravi (Cezzane Khan) and Raka (Gaurav Dixit), pat comes the reply, “I just met Anjori once. She’s cool. The boys I haven’t seen. Whoever plays Dharamji’s part, should look sturdy and innocent like him,” she smiles.
Wouldn’t she want to see Esha doing her part in the show? “Never. Whether it’s on TV or in a movie. I want her to have an identity of her own.. why should she do what I have already done? People should recall us for different roles.. not the same ones. She will also have to face too much comparison and that is not a healthy option,” says the Dream girl.
On the work front, Hema Malini will be seen next in Vijayaraje Scindia’s biopic and a Deepa Sahi project with Nana Patekar. She informs that despite financial crunches in the country, the biopic is 90 per cent ready.. with tremendous support from the royal family in terms of content. But the latter project, she says, is stuck. She hopes it starts soon, toes and fingers crossed.
Recently, it was rumoured that she was bonding big time with the south hottie of the 1990s, Sridevi and advising her on a comeback. To this, the actress states, “I know Sridevi well, but I haven’t met her in two years and over. How can I advise her on a comeback?”
Another rumour that made the rounds was that Revathy, who was supposed to direct a film for her production company with daughter Esha, and she had a verbal fight of sorts. Malini rubbishes it: “No, no. She was never making a movie for me and I didn’t have a fight with her.”
When asked about radio spots called Hemaji ke zuper tips and Sun Sunny (dedicated to Dharamendra), she retorts, “I haven’t heard either of these but I know people imitate both of us all the time on TV and ‘live’ shows. We don’t mind it because imitation is the best form of flattery.. right?”
Right. Point noted, Hemaji!!