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I want to work with Rajni sir, yaar: Ash

Actress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan just can't wait to work with Superstar Rajnikanth in Shankar's 100 crore mega-movie Robot.
IANS | By HT Correspondent, Mumbai
UPDATED ON APR 11, 2008 11:47 AM IST

The much sought after Aishwarya Rai, who has been turning down movies for more than just lack of time, says she refused Karan Johar's comedy Dostana because the quirky situations mentioned in the script wouldn't have worked.

Karan wanted to cast her with Abhishek Bachchan and John Abraham. He has now roped in Priyanka Chopra for the female lead.

When asked why she accepted superstar Rajnikanth starrer Robot, Aishwarya said: "I want to work with Rajni sir, yaar. He is phenomenal. Everyone speaks of this experience. I'll actually go through the experience. It's very important for me to come away with something from my films since I give so much."

The film is directed by Shankar, who gave Aishwarya her first break in Jeans.

Excerpts from an interview:

First things first. Did you turn down Karan Johar's Dostana?
Yes, I opted out of Dostana because the inter-personal relationships among the three of us made me uncomfortable. Now that Abhishek and I are married, the kind of quirky situations shown in Dostana, albeit in a comic vein, wouldn't have worked."

But Dhoom 2 and Jodhaa Akbar worked although you were paired with Hrithik Roshan and not Abhishek?
But Dhoom was before marriage and there was no triangle in Jodhaa Akbar. Now the audience can't see me sharing my affections for Abhishek with another guy. I can't tell you why it wouldn't have worked for Abhishek and I as a pair without giving away the plot. Karan Johar wasn't bothered with all these personal considerations, but I felt otherwise. I thought the audience would wonder, "She likes John and Abhishek equally? No way!"

Now you'll be romancing Rajnikanth in Shankar's Robot?
It's a total Rajni-Shankar styled entertainer. There's no logic as to why I agreed to do it beyond the urge to work with Rajnikanth. Shankar and Rajni sir have approached me for so many films, it's embarrassing. Ever since we did Jeans together Shankar has approached me for all his films except Boys.

Rajni sir, being the senior that he is, has shown no egoistic traits in approaching me for his last four-five films. And my refusal to do his films was never misconstrued by him. I admire him for that. It speaks volumes for his seniority and his calibre as a human being to never take offence to my no."

Is that why you said yes to Robot?
This time for Robot it was an immediate yes from me. I just wanted to work with Rajni sir and Shankar. My Jeans with Shankar was a super success. I learnt so much from Jeans and Shankar. Robot too will be a learning experience.

Is it a sci-fi film?
It is hard to define. But technically it will take cinema to another level. I can only say I'll come away enriched. It's very important for me to come away with something from my films since I give so much. I want to work with Rajni sir, yaar. He's phenomenal. Everyone speaks of this experience. I'll actually go through the experience.

Well you have a seasoned phenomenon (Amitabh Bachchan) in your own house.
Yes, but I share a different equation with the one in my house. They're both institutions. And I'm blessed to work with both. When I look back at all the leading men, directors and technicians I've worked with I feel totally blessed. It's a good place to be in.

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