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2010: A Love Story

Akele Hum Akele Tum, the title didn’t reflect a love story with a happy ending. But the couple waltzing at Mumbai’s Film City was in perfect sync.

entertainment Updated: Jun 13, 2010 13:31 IST
roshmila bhattacharya

Akele Hum Akele Tum, the title didn’t reflect a love story with a happy ending. But the couple waltzing at Mumbai’s Film City was in perfect sync. Aamir Khan and Manisha Koirala were a made-for-each-other twosome on the sets of Mansoor Khan’s desi remake of Kramer VS Kramer. They only got lonesome later in the story.

Away from the cameras too, Cupid was at play. Manisha’s NRI boyfriend, Sameer, was visiting. And as soon as Mansoor called “Cut”, she disappeared into her make-up room. It was a while before she emerged for another shot. Then back in, this time to keep Sameer’s aunts company.

I waited outside, wondering if Madam M would make my day by admitting to a soon-to-happen-wedding. Wishful thinking! Manisha was in no hurry to commit to a relationship even though she’d been waiting for years for her Prince Charming to come along and wake her up with a kiss.

Sleeping Beauty in KG

“My first starring role was that of the bewitched princess in a school play based on Sleeping Beauty. I was in kindergarten at the time and slept my way through it,” she informed me later in the day, with a flash of that dazzling smile. Naturally, I enquired about her first prince. She didn’t remember him at all. “But wouldn’t it be wonderful if life was a fairy tale, complete with a happy-ever-after ending?” sighed the woman who looked like Hans Christian Andersen’s Dresden princess herself, adding that in the years since, she had found her own godmothers, encountered princes in plenty and even had a wicked fairy or two jab needles into her.

She didn’t want to talk about the baddies. They could try to make mischief but she would handle them. “I may look like delicate china but there’s steel under the velvet,” she insisted. Grandmother is godmother In the role of a godmother, she had cast her own grandmother. “She is so fragile, so ladylike and so wonderfully wise. I’m told I look a lot like her. My grandmother taught me classical dance and encouraged me to go out and grab the world by the collar,” informed the Bollywood star from Nepal’s first family.

What about her prince? “Love-at-first-sight happens only in Mills & Boon romances and in 1942- A Love Story,” I was told pragmatically. “My man should be better than me in every way. He should be more famous and richer than me. He should be someone I can look up to. Unfortunately, none of the men I’ve been involved with have been stronger than me. That’s why they haven’t been able to hold on to me.”

It was a tall order. And Sameer too found it difficult to hold on to her. And once again, Manisha walked away into the sunset alone. Finding Prince Charming The last time I met her, just before the release of Sirf, she was happy for her brother, Siddharth, who had found his soulmate in Yulia Wekitova.

“If I find someone to walk the path with me, great. Otherwise I’m be happy to walk alone,” she retorted when I enquired about her own soulmate. Early this year, I heard that Manisha had finally found her match in Samrat Dahal, a family friend and a Nepali businessman whose father had reportedly made a fortune in the leather industry. The wedding is set for June 19 and will be in Kathmandu.

Nepal’s capital city will now be Manisha’s first home but, she asserts, that she will continue to be a Mumbai girl and remain open to film offers. At 40, the Sleeping Beauty has finally found her Price. Now she’ll never be akele again!