Rani on buddy Kunal Kohli's Mujhse Dosti Karoge.
The year started on a negative note for Rani Mukherji. Her last film, Kirti Kumar's Pyaar Diwana Hota Hai, was a disaster and her film with Ajay Devgan, Milan Luthria's Chori Chori has been indefinitely delayed.
The only recent notable hit she appeared in was Karan Johar's Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham, in a guest appearance.
The actress is now looking forward to in Yash Chopra's Mujhse Dosti Karoge and Shaad Ali's Saathiya, she tells Bharati Dubey.
Tell us about your role in Mujhse Dosti Karoge.
It is about three friends --- Raj (Hrithik Roshan), Pooja (Rani) and Tina (Kareena Kapoor). We are childhood friends. Raj goes abroad, promising to keep in touch through the Internet. I keep in touch with Raj, passing off as Tina. When he returns, I get scared and ask Tina to tell Raj that it was she who had been in touch with him.
What is your experience of working with debutant director Kunal Kohli?
I loved every moment of working in Mujhse Dosti Karoge. I never felt that Kunal was a first-time director. Since he had directed music videos, he knew the technicalities of filmmaking. We were given a bound script. We improvised on our dialogues. Being part of a Yash Chopra film is a privilege.
Apparently, Hrithik Roshan felt his style of working matched yours...
We got along really well. Besides having a similar pattern of working, it is important to establish a comfort level between coactors. Mujhse Dosti Karoge was one big picnic. Since Hrithik and I were comfortable with each other, I would tell him whether a particular shot was well done or not.
And did he approach you for advice?
Yes. We are more friends than costars. I would tell him to redo a scene if I thought it was not good or there was something missing. Hrithik takes my suggestions seriously.
What made you agree to do a two scene-one song role in Karan Johar's Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham?
I will do anything for Karan Johar. He is a buddy. He treats me like his little sister and is always there for me. He even suggests the kind of films I should be doing or not doing.
There are rumours of you getting into production...
They are not true. I still have a lot to do as an actress. Production is too much of a headache. For the moment, let me enjoy acting. Besides, setting up a production house requires a lot of money.
You have had only one release (Pyaar Diwana Hota Hai) this year...
One really cannot help it, at times. Chori Chori is stuck because of financial problems. But now, I hear the film will be released. I hope people see the film. I have attempted comedy for the first time.
How is Shaad Ali's Saathiya shaping up?
It is scheduled for a September release. The film, a remake of Mani Ratnam's Alai Payuthey, is about how people, however intelligent, make mistakes. Saathiya is about what happens after this doctor falls in love and gets married.
There were rumours that Shaad Ali was thrown out of the film.
It is not true. Shaad is a good director. He assisted Mani Sir (Mani Ratnam) in many of his films. I was supposed to work with him in Dil Se. I could not manage due to date problems.
There is a Sudhir Mishra film (of Is Raat Ki Subaah Nahi fame), which is almost complete. I am not in a hurry. I will wait for the right scripts.