Once she was the petite and a cute girl next door. Not any more though. Looking lean, luscious and rosy cheeked is Minissha Lamba these days. Lean because that's how many of the abba ki 'daughters' look now-a-days, right? Luscious because each time you see her photo-shoots, you go o-lala and rosy cheeked because she has just wrapped up her latest flick Abba Ka Kuan in Hyderabad directed by one of Indian cinema's finest film makers, Shyam Benegal, not to forget, she had a blast out there too. Being smart, well-read and occasionally outspoken, she can switch to humour from high drama in a split second, and doesn't she remind us of the sexy Heather Graham? Not that we are playing the comparison game here but this Indian siren has the same combination of freshness, intelligence and a great body like her Hollywood compatriot.
Speaking exclusively over the phone only for Bollywood Hungama, the actress shares her unforgettable Hyderabadi connection. "Mostly we were restricted to Ramoji Film City where we were shooting and even though it was an outdoor schedule, this has been one of my most relaxed schedules I've been on. The place we were put up was completely secluded from the city and was very beautiful. There were no cars around and suddenly when you're so cut off from the world around you, you've achieved nirvana", exclaims Mini. We love calling her by that name. But the one name which the actress can't get out of her mind is of the master and mentor, Mr. Shyam Benegal. "Shyam sir is a veteran. It was a pleasure working for him because even after the end of a grueling one month in Hyderabad, he was still recharged without the exhaustion and the pressures of shooting an entire film in one go under soaring temperatures of 45 degrees Celsius."
Now we don't like to give this out but we have to. Did you guys know that Lamba loves to get her hands on the spicy hot biryani? What's disappointing is the fact that....We'll let the temptress do the talk. "My God! I tried my level best not to indulge in the mouth watering biryanis. So my staple diet out there was curd and rice, the famous South Indian delicacy. That kept the heat away for a bit". Minissha is also very sporty, not for her talking to us about her just finished film, but the fact that she got the time to brush up her skills on a sport she loves playing, Squash. She says, "Playing squash wasn't a deliberate attempt to shed the kilos. I was so glad that they had a court out there because it's been a while that I've improved my game. One has to keep fit as an actor but at the same time you also need to keep yourself entertained post any shoot. Playing squash was the perfect way to keep my mind and body occupied."
Back to the film, the question remains, is the role going to fetch the actress a lot more than what she expects? The answer was loud and clear. "What I expect from every film is that you grow as an actor and are proud of the work you've done. Ultimately, the fate of the film is not something which is in your hand. You do what you can and what is under your control. I hope the film fetches a lot more for all of us than just me". Abba Ka Kuan is a political satire and a light hearted take on certain things we all talk about. The rosy cheeked chic sounds all excited. "When I read the script, I simply loved it. I hope people like the film because it deserves to be liked. The whole point of you working and making a film is that people like it. You don't make a film so that people hate it. Just because my last film did not work, that doesn't mean I did not believe in the film. I believed in it till the very end from the day one".
We did remind you at the very beginning that the actress is outspoken. She further adds, "Everything is an experience in life. You cannot know the good without knowing what the bad is and the vice versa. That's how life is. I am a true optimist". And so is her co-actor in the film who plays her father, known as Abba, Boman Irani. Mini shares her new born relationship. "Literally I adopted Boman as my father while we were off the sets. I would call him Abba all the time and he too would call me by the name of the character I play. The bond between the father and the daughter would be played out post pack up every evening, so much so that when something had to be done, I would take permission from Abba. It was one of the most unique relationships I've had with any co-star to date. The moment I wouldn't find Boman around, I'd be looking for him. That's how the rapport was." So after saying bye-bye to Hyderabad, Minissha Lamba now looks forward to the IIFA 2009, she says, which is going to take place in the beautiful city of Macau, and we hope she enjoys it as much as she enjoyed Hyderabad, except the weather, we guess.