What started as an amusing speculative idea has now reached the realm of reality. The idea of making a sequel to Ramesh Sippy’s 1972 blockbuster Seeta Aur Geeta which came to its leading lady Hema Malini when she went to Russia earlier this month is now being seriously taken up by director Ramesh Sippy, a self-confessed “ardent fan of Hemaji”.
Sippy who last year completed a film with Hema Malini entitled Simla Mirch, an age-challenged romance featuring Hema and Rajkummar Rao is all for the idea even after so many years. Says Sippy, “So what if 45 years have passed since we did Seeta Aur Geeta? Hemaji is still the Dream Girl of the nation. I did four films with her including Sholay, the film everyone identifies me with. Nothing has changed over the years. She is still Bollywood’s most beloved actress, a rock star.”
Hema Malini says the idea grew in Russia. “I know Seeta Aur Geeta is one of my most beloved films. But I didn’t know it had such a fan-following in Russia. The Russian fans want a sequel. I jokingly promised them I would give it to them. But now we are seriously looking at the idea.”
Interestingly Seeta Aur Geeta was first offered to Mumtaz who couldn’t do the film because of prior commitments. Ramesh Sippy had already worked with Hema Malini in Andaz where she dared to play a young widow. Seeta Aur Geeta seemed custom-designed for the Dream Girl’s superstardom.
Says Hema Malini, “The film was a rage. To this day people remember me sitting on a ceiling fan. Don’t ask me how I got there. You have to believe in the madness if you want the audience to believe in it.”