Rediff.com  » Movies » What Malaika Finds Extremely Painful

What Malaika Finds Extremely Painful

By MOHNISH SINGH
Last updated on: October 19, 2021 10:44 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

'It feels extremely painful when you tell a contestant that your journey ends here or that you have to go back home.'
'My heart breaks at that point because each one of them is an exceptional talent.'

Photograph: Kind courtesy Malaika Arora/Instagram

Dance reality shows have always been a big hit with audiences. Apart from the contestants who come from all across the country, another highlight of such shows are the judges whose star wattage bring in more eyeballs.

Malaika Arora, who has judged several reality shows in the past, returns to the judging panel for the second season of Sony TV's India's Best Dancer, along with Terence Lewis and Geeta Kapoor.

At the launch of the show, the actress tells the media, "We are doing a press conference with so many people after almost two years." Rediff.com Contributor Mohnish Singh listens in.

How does it feel to be surrounded by so many people after such a long time?

It feels a little weird. We are doing a press conference with so many people after almost two years.

I hope everyone is vaccinated.

I have had both my vaccines.

It feels weird, but at the same time, people are limping back to normalcy, the country is limping back to normalcy. So that's a good sign.

I am just happy to be back at work. It is the best feeling.

IMAGE: Malaika Arora and Shah Rukh Khan in the song Chaiyya Chaiyya from Dil Se..

You have been a part of several popular dance numbers in your career. Which one is closest to your heart?

I would say Chaiyya Chaiyaa.

Is there any dance number featuring another actress that you wished you could have done?

Strangely, my love for Farah Khan's choreography is always there, and I love her song Sheela Ki Jawani.

Munni Badnaam Hui and Sheela Ki Jawani released together, a few months apart in the same year.

I really loved the way that song came out.

IMAGE: Terence Lewis, Malaika Arora and Geeta Kapoor at the launch of India's Best Dancer. Photograph: Pradeep Bandekar

When there are three judges on a panel, differences of opinions cannot be ruled out while judging contestants. How do you make sure that everyone is on the same page?

Yes, that is obvious when three judges are on a panel.

We are different people with different personalities.

Having said that, when we come together on that panel, the idea is to bond, to understand each other and encourage each other to be better at what we do.

There are many, many moments where I felt I learnt something from Terence or Geeta. I am able to imbibe something from them.

For me, it is not only sitting on a panel and being a judge. For me, it is a learning experience.

I take those moments with me back home because that enriches me as a person.

The day you stop learning, I think is the day you should stop breathing.

IMAGE: Terence, Malaika and Geeta dance at the launch of India's Best Dancer. Photograph: Pradeep Bandekar

What have you learnt from your co-judges?

I have learnt a lot of Hindi words and idioms from Terence.

I always have a pen and a paper in my hand whenever we come together to shoot, and I keep writing the words he speaks.

There are some words that I have never ever heard before.

I am sure by the end of the show, I will have a shabdkosh (dictionary) ready (laughs).

Photograph: Kind courtesy Malaika Arora/Instagram

How difficult it gets to eliminate contestants, especially when they seem to be so exceptionally talented?

It is extremely difficult.

What you have seen on stage is just a glimpse of the incredible talent that we have on the show.

Imagine what is going to happen when all 12 contestants come on the stage and perform! It will be outstanding!

It feels extremely painful when you tell a contestant that your journey ends here or that you have to go back home.

My heart breaks at that point because each one of them is an exceptional talent.

We get to learn a lot from them.

I feel I learn a sense of discipline just by looking at them.

So, yeah, it feels bad to eliminate someone, but that's the format of the show.

It gives them the chance to perform.

It gives them the chance to pave a way for them because they are very young.

It gives them an opportunity to go out in the world and be able to do something with their lives.

In a promo, we saw a contestant touching you on the cheeks. You looked quite shocked. What was going on in your head?

Yes, I was a bit frightened because these are COVID times.

He suddenly came near me and started touching my cheeks. I got really scared for a second.

He was doing it with a lot of love and I feel very, very touched.

But yes, I was bit scared for that second.

I was wondering if his hand was sanitised (laughs).

Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
MOHNISH SINGH