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It seems like Minissha Lamba is worried that I've been getting to know her too quickly. Her flawless face has already graced the cover of numerous magazines and newspapers after she starred in films like Corporate, Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd and Dus Kahaniyaan. The delightful Miss Minissha is unabashed in her enthusiasm. And why not? At 23, she is clearly enjoying herself and proving too, that's she's got the talent to match the belief that has been shown in her by some top filmmakers. So far, she has played a small but undoubtedly eye catching role in the films I've just mentioned but playing the magnificent 'Mahi' opposite Ranbir Kapoor in Yash Raj's next has proved to be one of the most vivid experiences of her career so far. In this exclusive interview, the actress talks about her new film Bachna Ae Haseeno, Bipasha Basu, Ranbir Kapoor, Siddharth Anand, her Patiala dress and her yet-to-be-boyfriend.
You're ten films old Minissha in just three years. For a woman who wanted to pursue journalism is now herself the Page 3 girl. Any regrets?
Not at all. No regrets. When things are going positive and you're happy being where you are, there will never be regrets.
So tell me how did this cute Minissha with a smile to die for land up in Bachna Ae Haseeno?
(Laughs) I think you've given all the pre requisites for a person to anyway land up. I mean, if it were anything else maybe it'd have been very difficult actually. Well, it was as simple as me getting a call from the producers of our film Mr. Chopra who wanted to meet me. I didn't know for what. When I met him, I discovered that some project was happening and in a few days time I was told to come and listen to the script. Of course, one doesn't have to listen or have a second thought about working with Yash Raj Films and that's how BAH happened.
Does that mean you got the role without being screen tested or auditioned?
No I didn't give any auditions nor was I screen tested.
You've worked with Bipasha Basu in Corporate. Any change you've noticed in her since your Corporate days?
Not at all, she's the warmest and the most lovely person that one can come across. She is very friendly, down to earth and very endearing. She has one of the most beautiful smiles I've seen in a very long time. It's wonderful to watch her smile.
And what change have you noticed in your own self?
The only change I noticed is that I've become more professional and that I've become more aware of my surroundings. For any other external changes, someone on the outside would be able to know that more than me.
The Lucky Ali song, which features you and Ranbir, is just so fresh like you. What kind of freshness do we see you infuse in the film?
When the film first opens, both of them are seventeen and eighteen year olds. Therefore, the fact that love is fresh for them and the whole experience of going out on their own with their friends and family is fresh for them. It infuses a sort of lightness and freshness that first love does in the lives of many people. So the locales are the same locales Yash Raj shot DDLJ in, because that is what is vital to the story line. My character 'Mahi' is a girl who is bred on DDLJ. She was bred on the perfect romance, which was between Raj and Simran in DDLJ, and here she is out looking for her perfect Raj. That's what she wants in her life, a perfect fairy tale ending to her love story.
Which does happen or doesn't?
You'll have to watch the film for that. If I'm going to tell you everything right now, what are you going to watch the film for?
Ever since we saw Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd we knew how gracefully you could shake a leg. Nothing can match those moves Minissha. What say? Will BAH give you the gracefulness back?
I am not dancing in Bachna Ae Haseeno. I really begged Siddharth Anand that I'd love to dance but the songs and the choreography Ahmed Khan had in mind didn't require my character to dance so much. In Ahista Ahista, the moves are more about the moment of love, moments of discovering first love and true love. More than dancing it's the love that is emphasized on, in the song.
Another thing that catches my attention is the lovely dress you're seen wearing in the film. Is that some sort of a 'lehenga'?
It's called a Patiala. In the film, I'm dressed up very Indian. Mahi will be seen wearing kurtas and patialas, kurtas and capri's. She is from Amritsar with a very young look and the period of our romance is the year 1996. So we've used colours that were in fashion then, colours that add the freshness and vibrancies to the emotions that our characters go through.
Tell us your experience of working with the other two leading ladies in the film - Deepika Padukone and Bipasha.
Well, we have very limited time onscreen together but whatever time we have is cherished because we got to be with each other for sometime at least. It's great to share screen space with everyone.
Did you take Bipasha's guidance or ask for any advice as far as your acting was concerned?
Actually I don't know because when you're on the sets and together, your performance is mainly dictated by your director and yes, I did ask Bipasha for fitness tips because she is someone who is so fit and so fabulously well aware of how to keep herself beautiful. So one definitely would like to know how she manages to do all of that.
Your first time ever with the newest and the hottest poster boy, Ranbir Kapoor.
I am a very shy person, I don't open up easily in front of new people, and if someone in front of me is shy as well then there is not much of conversation that would end up. That's what happened with Ranbir and me, we both were very shy. So yes, it did take time for us to open and be friendly but once we did get along, I discovered that Ranbir is a riot. He is so easy to get along with and a gentleman to the core. Working with him was fun, fabulous, and supportive. It makes your working day even more pleasurable when you're working with the people with whom you share the same wave length.
Not many people in their career get an opportunity to showcase different talents like you have so early in your career with films like Dus Kahaniyaan, Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd and Corporate. You really don't want to get stereo-typed, do you?
Yes. People are always comfortable when they stereotype you and slot you in a particular category. But my endeavour is to be a versatile actor, someone who can fit into any type of a role. I don't want to get slotted into a particular role.
So, are you still finding the perfect Raj in your life? Any boyfriends?
No boyfriend at the moment. And Yes, I think there is a bit of 'Mahi' in everyone, even in me. We are all in someway looking for our perfect mate. In some people, the dream dies out, in some people the dream is fulfilled, in some people you learn to negotiate with what you get. But one thing which is common in the people is that all of them are looking for the picture perfect romance and a fairy tale ending.
Brief us about the different cities you visited while filming Bachna Ae Haseeno.
For my chapter, we shot in Amritsar, Mumbai, and Switzerland.
And how was the experience of working with only a three film old Sid?
For a director, three films is a lot. I mean it's not new at all. He is the one who helms the film from beginning to the end. Sid is very young and a capable director who has made two very successful films before this. Bachna Ae Haseeno is also a fresh, bubbly, youthful and a romantic comedy, a genre that we haven't quite seen for quite sometime.
Any nervousness as the film hits the theatres in two weeks time.
No nervousness and no butterflies in the stomach except that you've had so much fun making this film and you've put so much into it that you only want the people to love it.
Any message for your fans?
Thank you so much of being so supportive of my films and me. Please watch Bachna Ae Haseeno. It's a film that you will enjoy and the experience that you will take home with you will be even more fulfilling.