Saturday, 23 April 2011

Sridevi and Rishi Kapoor in Nagina (1986)

Nov 9, 2000

Interview with Producer/Director of Nagina, Harmesh Malhotra.

Q: Tell us about Sridevi and Nagina. How did you convince her to play a snake?

Harmesh Malhotra: I had that subject with me for years but I didn’t know which actress could be approached for the role. I first thought of casting Jayaprada because I thought she was beautiful and had lovely eyes. When I narrated the subject to her she did not identify with the subject at all.

Then I met Sridevi on the sets of Subhash Ghai’s Karma and I asked her to spare some time to listen to a story. She gave me one hour and when I completed the narration she just turned to her mother and said, "Mummy I’m doing this role." We finalised everything in a month. I still remember the date when we started shooting. It was May 24 just before the monsoon arrived in Bombay.

Sridevi is one of the most professional and gifted actresses in Indian cinema. She endowed that complex role with a power and energy that remains unmatched. She gives the impression of being aloof and cold but scratch the surface and you’ll find a warm considerate human being. Like Rekha who gives the feeling that she is unapproachable and difficult. she is yet another actress who is very dedicated and sincere and extremely receptive to challenges.

Harmesh Malhotra passed away in 2005 and in his long career as a film producer and director, he worked with Sridevi in five films, more than any other actress; Nagina, Sherni, Nigahein, Banjaran and Heer Ranjha.  

Rishi Kapoor and Sridevi in Nagina
Sridevi and Rishi Kapoor in Nagina (1986). One of the biggest blockbusters of Bollywood!

Rishi Kapoor and Sridevi on the sets of the song Balma tum Balma ho - from the film Nagina

click to enlarge

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