Oprah didn't mention it: Shabana Azmi | tv | Hindustan Times
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Oprah didn't mention it: Shabana Azmi

Shabana Azmi refutes reports that she’ll be on Winfrey’s talk show. The media moghul is in India till January 22, and along with a special show, India Experience, that will cover her travels through Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur and Rishikesh, will also be filming major portions of her new series, Oprah’s Next Chapter.

tv Updated: Jan 20, 2012 12:43 IST
Roshmila Bhattacharya
Oprah Winfrey

The curtains came down on her famous chat show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, on March 25, 2011. The media moghul is in India till January 22, and along with a special show, India Experience, that will cover her travels through Mumbai, Delhi, Jaipur and Rishikesh, will also be filming major portions of her new series, Oprah’s Next Chapter.

Understandably, she’s keen to know the country and the largest film industry in the world, Bollywood. And along with Shantaram author Gregory David Roberts, who gave her a guided tour of Mumbai, she reportedly found knowledgeable tutors in actor Anil Kapoor and poet-writer-lyricist Javed Akhtar, whom she met last Monday at the dinner hosted at the Godrej House.

“Yes, Javed and she spoke for a long time but I’m not sure what they discussed. I think it was poetry and how different it is when you have to write verses for a movie keeping a particular situation in mind. I’m sure the poet charmed her,” smiles wife Shabana Azmi.

Oprah also chatted with the internationally acclaimed actor-activist, who describes her as a people’s person, exceptionally warm and with an air of humanity. “There were over 100 guests at the dinner and she made time for everyone. She’d done her homework and was not just making polite conversation but holding conversations,” she says.

The orange and gold sari, presented by Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, who even draped it for her, made Oprah the cynosure of all eyes. “She looked lovely, and though she admitted that the sari was giving her trouble, she carried it off well,” compliments Shabana.

Quiz her on reports that Amitabh Bachchan and she are potential candidates for Oprah’s new talk show and she retorts, “There’s been no communication on that and she didn’t mention it when we were chatting. But if she were to approach me, I’d love to be on her show.”

Shabana admits that in the last decade she’s often been asked to host a talk show like Oprah’s. “At least 130 times,” she laughs. “But of course, I didn’t tell her that.”