Gajraj Rao will soon be seen playing the role of a typical middle-class father of two kids in Maja Ma. The film will start streaming on Amazon Prime Video from October 6. Directed by Anand Tiwari, it also stars Madhuri Dixit-Nene as his wife. The Free Press Journal caught up with the actor for a chat. Excerpts:
Were you given a chance to do garba?
I like dancing but whenever I try it with the help of a big choreographer, they fail to make me dance well.
What would you like to share about Madhuri?
I don’t know what to tell her about her talent or brilliant performances. She needs no introduction. It’s like showing a torch to the bright sun. I consider her like a guru.
What is the one thing you have liked and learned from her?
I loved her work on the script. I like revising lines until the shot is taken. But Madhuriji does it so effortlessly. She does not sit and memorise the lines like I do.
Which films of Madhuri are your favourites?
I liked all her films. In Parinda, her role was very powerful, in Prahaar she had done a deglam role. Mrityudand, Dil To Pagal Hai… In all these films, she has brought forth her best performances. She has done mass-commercial formula cinema as well as performance-oriented cinema.
Who are your favourite male actors?
I love (Amitabh) Bachchan saab’s films. When I saw Mr. Natwarlal I felt – yeh mera dost hai. You feel that character will surely help people. Also, I loved Dharamji (Dharmendra). When I was doing theatre, I always looked up to Naseer bhai (Naseeruddin Shah) and Om Puriji. When I watched Naseer bhai and Omji, I felt their performances are so very different.
What kind of romance will audiences get to watch in Maja Ma?
This film does not have a celluloid kind of romance but it is a real-life partner kind of romance. I was in the same frame with Madhuriji who has worked with most famous actors but she made me feel so comfortable. You just felt she is your co-actor and I’m also important to her.
Do you feel nervous when you begin shooting the first day?
I feel very nervous before the shoot begins. I always imagine that if I don’t give my best performance, I may feel helpless. You may have worked a lot and acting you feel is easy. But when you are working in front of the camera, you feel nervous. And whenever I think about that nervousness, I feel a little nervousness is okay.