It is no coincidence that R. Madhavan's first screen kiss is for his mentor Mani Ratnam's Guru. The surprise is that it should have been with an actress who has a very propah image... Vidya Balan!
Even more surprisingly, Ratnam, for whom Madhavan broke his no-kissing code of conduct, has given his protégé the briefest role of his career.
"That's okay. I did it with my eyes open. I mean the film, not the kiss," laughed Madhavan.
Abhishek Bachchan is hogging the limelight for his performance in the film, which is loosely based on the life and times of industrialist Dhirubhai Ambani, founder of the Reliance group of industries.
"Well, even my wife Sarita thinks I've a small role. But what the heck! I did it for my mentor. As for the kiss, I did exactly what was in the script," Madhavan informs.
Hadn't he promised his wife he would never kiss any of his heroines on screen?
"Well... that's okay. She saw the kiss and liked it. You can't say no to Ratnam. And frankly, I didn't want to. There're some things one has to do."
Was he uncomfortable doing it?
"Well I'm not a seasoned screen kisser. But I'm an actor. I'm supposed to do what I'm asked to."
One thing is for sure. The Guru kiss will be Madhavan's first and last screen smooch.
Years ago, a kiss in Umesh Mehra's Guru between Mithun Chakraborty and Sridevi had created a furore. But this time there's no hornet's nest to stir up.