Quietly, Bollywood's ageless Dream Girl Hema Malini brought in her 61st birthday on Saturday, October 16, with a party at a suburban hotel. A close-knit warm evening of great reminiscences the highlight of the evening was the pact that Hema made with Dharmendra.
On her 61st birthday, the Dream Girl, who has wowed million with her performances, vowed to fulfil her dream of releasing her daughter Esha's comeback vehicle Tell Me Oh Khuda on January 14, come what may.
Post-production work for the film will now be undertaken on a war footing. Husband Dharmendra has promised every possible assistance.
The birthday girl confirms that her parivar has indeed taken on the task of releasing the Dream Girl's dream project on time. "We have decided on January 14...let's see, I know it's cutting it really close. But one has to set difficult deadlines to achieve targets. Tell Me Oh Khuda is very important for both me and Dharamji. When I had to take charge of the film, I didn't know how I'd complete it. But I did. The film is at the moment my biggest priority."
The birthday party therefore turned out to be three-pronged celebration.
Says Hema, "Besides my birthday, we were also celebrating the completion of Tell Me Oh Khuda. And it was also Navratri. Now, if we can release on January 14, I promise you we'll have the biggest celebration possible."
Hema had to recreate Turkey in Film City to finish the incomplete portions of the shooting which took place in the country a few months back. With the film's official director Mayur Puri being eased out of the project, the scenario looked bleak for the expensive project shot in 3 continents with 3 different cinematographers.
But the tireless diva matched the Turkish sequences shot actually on location in the country with what remained to be shot in Film City.
Said Hema, "We shot extensively in Turkey, but unfortunately the shooting could not be completed. I had no other option but to recreate Turkey in Mumbai. Luckily I've a fantastic team. They've all been very encouraging. Otherwise I wouldn't have been able to take on this huge challenge when my hands are over-full."
Hema admits she was nervous taking over the direction of her daughter's film. "I have not directed a film for 18 years since Dil Aashna Hai. After the boy (director Mayur Puri) had to go, many directors came forward offering to complete the film for me. But since Tell Me Oh Khuda was conceptualized by my team and me, I was determined to see it to the end."