Actress Shabana Azmi says she was skeptical about doing the educational drama “Chalk N Duster”, but Juhi Chawla’s enthusiasm for the film prompted her to give her nod.
“When I read the script, I liked it. But I felt that I didn’t know the people involved — the director and the producer. So I was hesitant. But then they took my brother Baba Azmi as the cameraman and the way he photographs me always makes me feel very much at peace. So I thought this is one positive sign,” Shabana said during the film’s promotion.
“But actually the deciding factor was Juhi Chawla ji, because she liked the story very much and she visited my house and arranged for a narration. I saw her enthusiasm for the film, which I felt was very good for the film,” Shabana said.
She also said it was the first time she met Juhi.
Juhi had said in an interview that it was exciting to work with Shabana and that she couldn’t imagine anyone else in Shabana’s character.
Shabana, who plays a Maharashtrian teacher in the film, said she modelled her character on her sister-in-law Sulbha Arya in terms of attire, jewellery and hairstyle.
She said it was a pleasant atmosphere on the sets because a lot of scenes were shot with actual teachers and in real schools.
Shabana also praised the other actors in the film.
“I am friends with Zarina (Wahab). Divya (Dutta) had played my daughter in ‘Umrao Jaan’, and has fulfilled her role excellently. Richa Chadda has done a special appearance in the film and has done a brilliant job and I’m sure her work will be appreciated. I’m also delighted to play Girish Karnad’s wife again after so many years.”
“Rishi Kapoor has also done a cameo and he is such a jovial kind of a person and I’ve always had a good relationship with him. He’s worked with grace and dedication and I’m really grateful, he’s done us a great favour,” Shabana said.
“Chalk N Duster”, directed by Jayant Gilatar, will release on January 15.
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