Veteran actor Shabana Azmi is awaiting her next release with Shekhar Kapur and it is titled ‘What’s Love Got To Do With It’, which also stars Hollywood star Emma Thompson. As per the actress, the director ‘inspires, coaxes, cajoles’ his actors without forcing his will on anyone.
Speaking to Filmy Shilmy, sje said, “It isn’t like he is pushing his will down your throat. Shekhar, as he has a vast body of experience, but when he did Masoom with me, he wasn’t lacking in confidence though it was his first film. But now, he was very relaxed, given that the circumstances were so excruciating and it was at the height of COVID and it was freezing in London…he kept his calm and humour, and kept it light for the actors.”
Having starred in path-breaking films in terms of women representation, Azmi also reflected on the actresses today, and said, “When I did Arth, it was a struggle with the end—the distributors said it was a wonderful film, but an Indian wife said no to her husband, won’t be accepted, and it turns out that’s what they celebrated. Often, filmmakers are not in touch with what audiences are ready to view.” She added that it isn’t such a struggle today for actresses to make a feminist statement in their films, saying, “They want to do something substantial, they don’t want to be an appendage to the heroes, just wearing beautiful clothes. You have to shake patriarchy, and shake it off.”
Azmi will also feature in Karan Johar’s upcoming romantic comedy, ‘Rocky aur Rani Ki Prem Kahaani’, which stars Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt, Dharmendra and Jaya Bachchan. Talking about the project, Azmi signed off by saying, “Karan Johar is a dedicated Hindi film fan. Definitely, the whole idea of romance between me and Dharmendra’s character, is based on little snippets from Hindi films…so you will feast on what he’s got there. I can’t reveal too much, but it is certainly there.”
The film after facing several postponements and delays will now release on July 28.