A spirited 75, Kamlesh Gill who plays the gizmo-friendly whiskey-drinking Saas in Shoojit Sircar's Vicky Donor has been doing theatre from 1957. She has done some films earlier including Imtiaz Ali's Socha Na Tha and Love Aaj Kal.
"But in all these years I didn't get the attention that I'm now getting for my role in Vicky Donor," says the lucid articulate Ms Gill who worked in the railway services for 40 years. "But acting was always a passion. When I'm acting on stage or television or in films, I feel alive and charged. Not too many roles like Vicky Donor are written. I'm lucky it came my way."
Ms Gill says she was extremely well looked after by Shoojit Sircar's unit. "I suffer from arthritis and I am unable to be on my feet for too long. Shoojit adjusted my character accordingly. And Dolly Ahluwalia who played my daughter-in-law was a wonderful co-star. I had a ball shooting this film."
Kamlesh Gill has two daughters, both married and settled away from home. Acting is her primary focus in life. "I could've done many more movies. In the 1970s my serial Aur Gham Bhi Hain Zamanein Mein became very popular and I got a lot of movie offers. But my husband passed away and I had to focus on looking after my daughters. Such is life."
She's happy that her unconventional Saas act has been appreciated. "I'm getting calls from all over saying they love the rapport I share with my Dolly. The whole idea of sharing a drink together is unconventional. But it has clicked. I guess it's a sign of how much our society and cinema has changed."
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