Veteran Bengali actress-danseuse-choreographer Mamata Shankar talks about returning to the big screen after a hiatus with an Amitabh Bachchan-starrer
Daughter of legendary dancers Uday and Amala Shankar, Mamata is returning to Hindi films after decades. She will be seen essaying the role of Amitabh Bachchan's wife in the upcoming film, 'Pink'.
Mamata made her acting debut in Mrinal Sen's National Award winning film 'Mrigayaa' (1976) with Mithun Chakraborty as her co-star.
Talking about her experience of working in the film she says, "I was nervous shooting with Mr Bachchan. I have known him since the late 1960s when he spent time in Kolkata, but sharing screen space with him made me all worked up. I remember, during a scene where I had to lie down on the bed and wait for Mr Bachchan's character to come in. But when he would enter, I couldn't help getting up. I could not digest the fact that he is entering the room and I am lying down. It was funny."
After having worked with Bengali film legends like Satyajit Ray and Mrinal Sen in several films, working with Big B was on her wish list. She never knew how it would happen, as she had not done a Hindi film in ages, but it did.
Amitabh Bachchan and Mamata Shankar on the set of their film, Pink
Mamata was initially offered a part in another upcoming Big B-starrer, Te3n by director Ribhu Dasgupta and producer Sujoy Ghosh. After discussions and fixing the shoot schedule, the makers apparently never got back to her. She then learnt that another actress had been finalised. She was disheartened, but opportunity came her way yet again — within days — to work with Big B.
She adds, "It was divine providence that I got another chance and that too soon after losing one opportunity. Pink is produced by Shoojit Sircar and directed by Aniruddh Roy Chaudhary. When they got in touch with me, initially I was hesitant, due to my previous experience, but there was no way I could have not been part of Pink."
The veteran actress-danseuse shot for the film during its recent Delhi schedule. She says, "There would be times when I wouldn't be satisfied even after 100 takes for a shot, but Mr Bachchan was supportive and patient with me."
The two bonded over Bengali and talking about their days of yore. "He knows all the typical Bengali words and would often break into the language on the set," she recalls. The cast of Pink also includes Taapsee Pannu, Kirti Kulhari and Andrea Tariang.