|So much fame, so
By Lakshmi Menon
She is barely out of her teens. And already
Karisma Kapoor is counted among the top heroines
in Bollywood history. ....
like to do different roles
By A.L. Choughle
He is one of the countrys top models and a
rising television star. Thats Milind Soman
of the controversial Tuff Shoes ad campaign and
Madhu Sapres boyfriend. Called a
lady-killer, thanks to his chiselled
face and hunkish body, Milind is said to be an
unfriendy and arrogant person.
Is he Not A Nice Man to
show gives millions of Khushwant Singhs
fans a chance to see him on television on a
subject he is completely at ease with
Meghna in Dubai: Party time
So much fame, so soon
By Lakshmi Menon
She is barely out of her teens. And
already Karisma Kapoor is counted among the top heroines
in Bollywood history. For, given her age and experience,
nobody has earned so much fame so soon.
Her latest is the hat-trick of awards beginning with the
two Filmfare awards one as Best Actress for Raja
Hindustani and the other is Best Supporting Actress for
Dil To Pagal Hai.
The third and the most prestigious of all is the National
Award, once again for Yash Chopras Dil To Pagal
Hai. The reality of this achievement has yet to sink in
I was in Canada on a concert tour with Salman Khan
and Sanjay Dutt, she narrates. One day I get
this call from dad informing me that I had won the
National Award. I was zapped beyond words!
Even when the congratulations started pouring in, I
remained in a daze. It was just so incredible. I had
always thought I had to pay an intense role, be swathed
in a saree through 18 reels, to wow the jury.
This was a role which had been offered and turned down by
every heroine from Juhi Chawla and Kajol to Urmila
Matondkar and Manisha Koirala all because Madhuri
Dixit had been signed as the first lead.
Karisma surprised everyone by accepting the role: I
looked at the role not from a stars point of view,
but from that of an actress. And I discovered that there
was lot of scope for me as a performer.
It was a challenge to be pitted opposite an actor
like Shahrukh (Khan) and match histrionics with a veteran
actress like Madhuri... I think I was destined to play
Nisha, destined for this honour.
Significantly, Karisma started her career with a
performance-oriented role in Prem Qaidi.
Despite being Raj Kapoors grand-daughter, she was
making her debut with a remake of a South Indian film
opposite a hero nobody had heard of.
The performance gave her the image of a glamour doll.
Thats true, she sighs. But I was so
young then and raring to go. I wanted to do everything I
However, amidst the fluff and formula, there were films
which gave her the chance to showcase her histrionics.
These included such superhits as Anari, Dhanwan and
Khuddar had a very interesting role for me and I
think I acted very well, she recollects. But
thanks to one Sexy Sexy dance number, my performance was
Karisma got stuck in a rut and it needed a Dharmesh
Darshan and Raja Hindustani to pull her out. That
one film changed everything, she admits.
Suddenly people began to take me seriously as an
The satisfaction is all the more as she has done the
family proud with the National Award. More
definitely, I have done dadaji proud, she says
referring to her grandfather, the late Raj Kapoor.
Now obviously no Kapoor is peeved with her for breaking
the family tradition and forcing her way into films?
Before her, no Kapoor girl had dared to step in the
Wrong, she snaps. Shashijis wife
Jennifer worked in movies even after she was a Kapoor
Bahu, so did Geeta Baliji (Shammi Kapoors wife).
There was never any restriction on us.
There is a thoughtful pause, after which Karisma
continues emphatically: I am into acting not
because of who I am but because this is what I love
doing. And I think I am doing it well, huh?
Krismas next biggie is Sooraj Barjatyas Hum
Hai Saath Saath. She is undoubtedly thrilled to be
working with the Maine Pyar Kiya and Hum Aapke Kaun Hai
director, but she is not playing favourites.
I give every film my best shot, be it Soorajs
film or David Dhawans Biwi No. 1 or Shravani
Deodhars Silsila Hai Pyar Ka, she says.
After all, am I not supposed to be a
directors actress? (MF)
"I like to do different roles
By A.L. Choughle
He is one of the countrys top
models and a rising television star. Thats Milind
Soman of the controversial Tuff Shoes ad campaign and
Madhu Sapres boyfriend. Called a
lady-killer, thanks to his chiselled face and
hunkish body, Milind is said to be an unfriendy and
arrogant person. But thats not the impression you
get when you meet him on the sets of Captain Vyom Ketan
Mehtas science fiction serial in which he plays the
title role. He is jovial, friendly and down-to-earth. And
who says he doesnt give interviews easily? Ask him
for an interview and he is ready for it immediately.
I only dont speak to the gossip press,
The starting point of the conversation is obviously
Captain Vyom. How does he find the experience of working
in a science fiction serial? Its really
good, he smiles. I was always interested in
working in this kind of a serial because I have been a
fan of Star Trek. In fact, I had this dram of playing
Batman. And Captain Vyom is quite close to that.
The serial is about the space mission of Captain Vyom and
his seven assistants to catch 12 villians whoi are out to
destroy planet Earth. And though Milind plays the title
role, is there any scope for him to perform in a serial
which has 10 minutes of computer graphics and special
effects.? There is lot of scope, he shoots
back. I have been noticed in this serial and have
also been appreciated a lot. Science fiction is just the
backdrop and the graphics are props.
Milind is all praise for his director. He says he finds
it very exciting to work with Ketan Mehta. He is a
brilliant director, he is trying to create
something new and different and thats why people
are appreciating it. The serial is getting an amazing
response from viewers.
Variety is the spice of life and thats what Milind
believes in. All the serials he has done so far have been
different from one another. As an actor I like to
do different roles, he emphasises.
Thats why you dont see me in soaps
which are all similar.
Milind debuted on television three years ago with A
Mouthful of Sky, Indias first English soap which he
says was badly criticised by the press. And Milind was
also called a wooden actor. He says though he
and the soap got a bashing from the press, he was noticed
in it and the soap also did very well despite its late
night slot. It was my first serial as an action and
I think I was okay, he feels. I dont
think I was that bad. Basically it was a learning
experience for me.
But more that A Mouthful of Sky, Milind was noticed in
Margarita, a tale of love and passion which was shot
against the backdrop of Goa. It was a brilliant
serial, he says. I think it was one of the
best serials made on Indian television. Next
followed Vakaalat, a court-room drama in which he played
a lawplaying a major role in Sea Hawks.
In three years Milind has done just five serials.
Thats because he is very selective, he says.
I dont want to repeat myself in any
role, he elaborates. Besides, I like to
repeat myself in any role, he elaborates.
Besides, I like to do one project at a time because
I cant run from one set to another.
Milind was never interested in acting. And neither was he
interested in modelling. He was happy doing a diploma in
electrical engineering after which he wanted to do the
degree. But around that time one of his friends suggested
that he venture into modelling. He visited an ad agency
and he was found unsuitable for a suitings campaign. A
few months later, he got a a call from a model
corrdinator for a print campaign of shirts. And when he
was told that he would be paid Rs 50,000 for it, he just
grabbed the offer. After that he didnt look back
and he went on to become one of the countrys top
And how did acting happen to him? Actually I was
not interested in acting at all, he says. I
was happy doing ad campaigns and fashion modelling. First
I got this offer for A Mouthful of Sky and I said no.
Then Amol Palekar approached me for Dayra which I decided
to do. Dayra took time to roll in and meanwhile he
was again approached for Mouthful..., which he accepted,
thinking it would be a good learning experience before he
Later Amol Palekar changed his mind. He replaced Milind
with Nirmal Pandey because Milind says things didnt
work out. But he regrets not doing the film which, he
feels, would have won him critical acclaim. Though he
lost Dayra he started getting lots of offers for serials
and Milind decided to become a full time actor.
Milind fails to understand why he is still called a
wooden actor. I have improved a
lot, he says. Nobody is a perfect actor right
at the start. One learns with experience. Jackie Shroof
took 10 years to mature as an actor. Sharon Stone was
noticed after 20 years. The fact is my directors are
happy with my performances. So I dont need approval
from anyone else.
Being a model, he must be an expensive actor. No I
am not that expensive, he informs. The fact
that my price is acceptable to my producers means that I
am not expensive. Moreover, if I like a project I bring
down my price.
Doesnt Milind want to work in films? I have
been getting offers for the last six years, he
reveals. I had shot for Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikander but
I left it after the second shooting schedule. After that
I had signed four films but they didnt go on the
floor. I am still getting offers but they are not
exciting enough. In any case I am not in a hurry to do
A year ago he had done six pilots of serials and Milind
says at least two of them are definitely going to go on
the air. I dont know what has happened to the
remaining four, he laughs.
Both in modelling and showbiz one gets to meet lots of
beautiful women. Milind laughs. Yes, thats
true, he laughs loudly. You meet lot of
beautiful women and you get attracted to them. But the
choice is yours.
He is going steady with Madhu Sapre for the last few
years. When is he going to tie the knot? We
havent decided yet, he smiles. We are
comfortable with our present relationship.