The Hindu Lit for Life 2018

There’s more to Hema Malini than just acting

Still dancing: Today, Hema Malini dons many roles.   | Photo Credit: K. Pichumani

She’s popularly called the Dream Girl, but there’s much more to Bollywood actor Hema Malini. Like how she was actually rejected during her first film outing in Tamil. Or how she won’t dance to film numbers on stage ever.

“I feel proud looking back at life,” said the actor, who has completed 50 years in cinema. “Present-day films are good but I would still say that my time was golden. I was lucky to work with the greats of the time,” she added.

The evergreen star, in conversation with author Ram Kamal Mukherjee, who has penned Beyond the Dream Girl, recalled her close association with Chennai, and even spoke a few lines in Tamil during the session, ‘Beyond the Dream Girl’, on the last day of The Hindu Lit for Life. “The four years I spent in the city were most memorable, as I was young and needed to make a big decision about getting into films.” However, her first experience in filmdom (for Tamil movie Vennira Aadai ) was far from memorable — the makers wanted her to change her name, and eventually, turned her down. “I was extremely hurt. Fortunately for me, a producer (Ananthaswami) took me to Hindi cinema and introduced me to people there. And they retained my original name there.”

Today, Hema Malini is a successful politician and an excited grandmother. Whenever she dances on stage, she goes classical. “I am a trained dancer since the age of six. Somehow, I haven’t felt like doing film dance on stage. It is something I maintain till today, despite the many offers that have come,” says the actor, who even sang a few lines for the enthusiastic audience.


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Printable version | Jun 22, 2021 6:07:08 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/lit-for-life/theres-more-to-hema-malini-than-just-acting/article22472033.ece

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