Sometimes when one comes face to face with one's idol, one doesn't know how to react. So it happened when Madhur Bhandarkar met Asha Parekh at an awards function where Madhur gave the veteran actress an award. Too timid and 'too much of a fan' to express his admiration and love, Madhur couldn't muster the courage to say what he had always wanted to tell his favourite actress. Until he could hold his admiration back no more.
Says Madhur, "I had saved it all up for years. I was and I am Ashaji's biggest fan. I loved every film of hers and would watch Love In Tokyo, Teesri Manzil, Jab Pyar Kissise Hota Hai, Kanyaadan, Kati Patang, Chirag and Main Tulsi Tere Aangan Ki over and over again. When I became an assistant at a video parlour, I made sure I was given the route where Ashaji lived. I told her the exact location and architecture of her bungalow. She has moved. But a part of me still lives in that bungalow."
Madhur remembers he would sneak up to her house and try to peep into her house when the maid would open the door to take the video cassettes. Recalls Madhur, "I never got a glimpse of my diva. When I came face to face with Ashaji at the awards function my knees trembled and my hands shook. I couldn't speak."
Ashaji smiles when told of her biggest fan's response to being in her presence. "Madhur is a very sweet boy. And a fine filmmaker. I love his movies. He makes such powerful films with women as central characters. He told me about how much I meant to him. I am surprised he still thinks well of me."
Madhur wants to cast his idol in a film. At the moment Ashaji is busy with the first anniversary of her hospital's re-opening on May 9. She plans to meet Madhur after that.