To see Shabana Azmi take over the screen once again , and never mind its size, in Terrie Samundra’s otherwise-disappointing Kali Kuhi is to be made aware all over again that she is by far the greatest living Indian actress.
Shabana laughs off these compliments, “I don’t take myself seriously at all.And when one is married to Javed Akhtar then one can’t even think of taking oneself seriously. He will make sure that no such thing happened. Do you know when I played a witch in Vishal Bhardwaj’s Makdee my wonderful darling husband said, ‘Makeup ki kya zaroorat hai?’ So much for a loving supporting spouse.”
Jokes apart Kali Khuhi was a challenge for the multiple National award winning actress who had never done the horror genre before. “But I feel more than the horror of the eerie kind this film is important because it addresses female foeticide the murder of the girl child. It is hard to believe that this evil practice exists even today in certain parts of India.”
To Shabana who grew up as an equal child to her parents the sheer horror of female foeticide is unacceptable. “We deny a girl the right to be born simply because of her gender? And we call ourselves a civil society. The director Terrie Samundra is US based. She had made significant short films. When she told me the plot for Kali Khuhi I readily agreed to be part of it. It’s important for actors with a voice to use it for the correct cause.”