'She was so much fun to be with, so full of life.'
'She used to bring her newspaper to the set every morning, and would read it until she was called for a shot.'
'She could talk on any subject under the sun.'
Amit Sharma's Badhaai Ho was Surekha Sikri's last big screen appearance, and her co-stars Neena Gupta and Gajaraj Rao reminisce fondly about the veteran actress .
"She was my senior at the National School Drama," Neena says.
"We used to look up to her. She would work in the repertory company of the NSD and her work was always outstanding. I used to watch her closely. Even during the shooting of Badhaai Ho, I would observe her acting. There was so much to learn from her. She was a great actor and remained one till her end."
Neena lights up remembering her shooting with Surekha Sikri.
"We had a ball shooting with her," she says, "She was so much fun to be with, so full of life. She used to bring her newspaper to the set every morning, and would read it until she was called for a shot. She could talk on any subject under the sun. She was an amazing woman. I am going to miss her."
"Sadly, we have lost one of our best actors," Gajraj Rao says.
"She was so well-read and such a sensitive artiste. My experience working with her during Badhaai Ho was a very happy one. She was not much of a talker. She didn't waste her time in idle chatter. But during rehearsals, before she faced the camera, she inspired all of us with her passion and dedication. Ghazab ke unka dedication tha."
Gajaraj elaborates on the actress's fierce commitment to getting it right.
"She had lengthy two-three page dialogues in Badhaai Ho. She was always prepared. She always remembered every dialogue because she did her homework before coming on the set. Our director Amit Sharma filmed eight-nine takes. She never hesitated in doing any number of takes happily."
"t was very inspiring working with her. I am going to miss her."