Best known for her role in Nishabd, Jiah Khan’s last Bollywood outing was Sajid Khan’s Housefull in 2010. She considered the multi-starrer her big ticket.
But she had to face disappointment when she could not be part of the numerous events in the days leading to its release, thanks to the ash cloud from the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull. It threw flights in the UK and Europe out of gear and Jiah had to stay put in London. She had flown into London to be with her folks to celebrate her birthday (February 20).
She would turn up at the Heathrow airport every day only to return home disappointed. “I could never have imagined such a situation. But then, natural disasters are something you can’t do much about. I am told the volcano last erupted in 1821 and that there was great mayhem even then,” she had bemoaned at that time.
She was slated to join the Housefull team for the film’s promotional activities. “I just want to land in Mumbai,” Jiah had exclaimed. On her activity list was her preparation for a film based on a classic play as well as a trip to Jamaica for the Haiti quake relief.
She loved to be in London during the winters and have a blast with her sisters. Birthdays would always be a big affair in her household. She would start planning the special day, weeks in advance. In her younger days, she would have lavish birthdays and even dressed up as Disney characters. She would insist that her birthday cake would be as grand too.
Jiah as Nafisa Khan made her debut in 1998 as a child artiste in Dil Se. When Ram Gopal Varma launched her in Nishabd in 2007 she rechristened herself as Jiah after Angelina Jolie’s movie Gia. She felt it sounded sexier than Nafisa. After doing Ghajini and Housefull, the actress disappeared only to resurface with her original name Nafisa. Only to be gone forever.