Govinda’s daughter Narmadaa aka Tina Ahuja is all set for her Bollywood debut with Second Hand Husband. She seems confident even though her debut has been talked about for over half a decade. Sitting calmly she talks about not just her coming movie but about her father, her rumoured debut opposite Salman Khan, and life in general. Excerpts…
Are you happy that you are finally making a debut because your debut had been in the talking for so many years?
I am happy and looking forward to the release of Second Hand Husband, but I wouldn’t say that I am relieved that I finally made a debut. I think every thing has a proper time. Prior to this movie also I was getting a lot of movie offers, but because of the immense pressure from the media about my debut, I didn’t sign just about any film. I waited and selected a script which I really connected to and wanted to be a part of. I know because my dad is a big star, I will definitely have a lot of comparisons, but until I was fully sure about the script and the story line I didn’t want to sign up on for something. If I hadn’t got anything like Second Hand Husband, I would have happily sat at home. I wouldn’t have just picked up a movie just for the sake of making a debut.
We had heard news about you having signed a film to be made by Lovely Singh? How true is that?
It’s true. I was to work in a film directed by him, but before the film could start rolling, there occurred some problems between him and the producer. After some days I came to know that Lovely had left that film. I too took a break from that film and waited a few months to see as to what was happening of that film. When nothing materialized after six months or so, I started meeting new people and reading new film scripts.
Didn’t your father help you out when you were going through such times?
I personally didn’t want my dad calling up producers asking them to cast me in their films. He is a superstar and I would never want him to do such a thing for me which will be below his level of stardom. I had seen many people used to call dad and asked him to recommend them, but I won’t do that. Dad had always asked me to do things my way. If I want to work in films, I will call up producers and directors personally and ask to meet them and see if they have any story or script where I would fit in. You will be shocked to know that it was I who has called Second Hand Husband director Smeep Kang. I had seen one of his Punjabi films and had loved it so much, I wanted to work with him. So I got his number from a friend of mine and got in touch with him. After a few months or so, he called up and spoke to me about this script he had got for his Bollywood debut.
Getting to Salman Khan, why was it that Sonakshi Sinha made a debut opposite him in Dabangg and not you? We had confirmed reports saying that you were supposed do the film before her. Weren’t you?
It’s all a rumour. I am a big Salman Khan fan and met him three-four times. I am too shy when he is in front. I couldn’t have ever imagined to be making my debut opposite him. As a kid, he was my most favourite actor.
Wasn’t your dad your favourite actor?
I have read so many articles in papers which say this same thing. I do love my father’s acting. But I loved Salman Khan as a kid very much. I mean, who didn’t.
Now that we are clarifying things, we also heard that your father had approached Salman but later on there was some issue between them…
Look. These all were just plain and simple rumours. Dad never asked Salman to launch me opposite him. He was very happy with the fact that Salman supported dad to get back into films with Partner after he had quit politics. But he also maintained always that Salman has not taken the burden of our whole family that he will be launching me. If I had to do something in movies it had to be on my own identity.
Agreed. Talking about your dad as an actor, he is famous for his superb dancing and impeccable comic timing. How much of both these have you imbibed from him? Did he give you any tips before this film in either of these?
Well actually you will have to wait and watch the film to know how good or bad I am in these two fields you mentioned (laughs). Talking about tips, I clearly remember the day when I told him that I also wanted to be an actor. He made me sit down and explained the pros and cons of the profession. He made it very clear that it wasn’t a piece of cake and it involved a lot of hard work. He made sure that I was brought up like a princess, but when I wanted to enter into films he was a bit concerned as he had known the hardships of the profession. The rest he said, I would have to handle it on my own and learn with the flow.
Will Govinda produce a film for you? Will both of you be seen as father daughter ever in a film?
Trust me, it depends on his mood. If he wants to produce, he will. He has produced his first filmAbhinay Chakra and he very busy with its work. Once that is done, we will think about whether he wants to produce a film for me or not. As far as being paired as father-daughter, I think he should never play my father onscreen. He could play characters like my mama or my chachu or something like that. Our pairing will be funnier in those relations. As father-daughter, it will become a bit too emotional.
Finally any actor or director in your wish list?
I have been saying it over and over again. I would want to work with Vipul Shah and yes withAkshay Kumar in the film (laughs).