For Naseeruddin Shah, script is the star of any film and he says within few minutes of reading the story of upcoming “Waiting” he knew he would do it as the plot kept him hooked.
The 66-year-old actor stars alongside Kalki Koechlin in Anu Menon’s drama about the special relationship between two people, who befriend each other in a hospital, while nursing their respective comatose spouses.
“I received the script through registered post from London. Anu said she was trying to get in touch with me for a while. I read it just once and decided I wanted to do it. I was hooked right away,” Shah told PTI.
The actor says in his career the decision to do or reject any film is always taken by him within the first few minutes of reading a script.
“If I get a script, it is invariably in one reading that I decide if I want to do it or not. Sometimes after reading a few pages I toss it away or I read on. But I have always made up my mind pretty early while reading it.”
Shah says there is also a kind of sixth sense that comes to play when he decides to do a movie.
“There are are some scripts I don’t even read by looking at it. The cover tells me something. I don’t read everything that comes to me. It is like sixth sense.”
In “Waiting” Shah plays Shiv, an old-school Philosophy professor while Kalki, 32, plays an advertising professional named Tara.
Calling Kalki a “tremendous” girl, Shah, who previously worked with the actress in “That Girl In Yellow Boots”, says he was impressed with the actress as she was a thorough professional.
“If Kalki had turned out to be anything else than what I expected her to be, I would have been grievously disappointed. She is an extremely sensible person. She is a thorough professional, never unprepared, never late, never fussing and never throwing her weight around. She is a tremendous girl and I would love to work with her again.”
Shah, who has worked with a number of female directors including Sai Paranjpye, Aruna Raje, Nandita Das, Zoya Akhtar besides Menon, says women filmmakers bring a certain level of sensitivity, which lacks in their male counterpart.
However, he says filmmakers should not be differentiated on the basis of their gender.
“They bring a certain sensitivity to a film which men can’t. But I would think it is not right to lump a filmmaker into male or female. It is wonderful that so many women are now involved in so many aspects of filmmaking.
“They were always involved in editing but now you see women behind the camera, as sound recordists, production line managers, assistant directors. It is a great thing to see.”
“Waiting” will hit theatres on May 27.