‘One day, I met her on a shoot, and as usual, she said she would give me time after the shoot.’
‘After she finished her shoot, she changed, got into her car and left.’
‘We were shocked, as she had never done that before.’
‘Suddenly we saw the car stop at the studio gates.’
‘She did not even wait for the car to reverse. She got out and ran to us.’
‘”I am very sorry, I totally forgot I had told you to wait,” she told us.’
Chennai-based photographer and cinematographer A V Bhaskar has been on the job for 40 years.
He has more magazine cover pictures to his credit than he can recall.
His work led him to Sridevi many times, resulting in many, many, beautiful pictures.
He shares his memories of working with the late iconic legend with Rediff.com‘s A Ganesh Nadar.
I first met Sridevi on the sets of Guru.
Those days I used to do the studio rounds to take pictures. I would start in the morning and finish in the evening.
I never shot while a shoot was on.
I would make the stars pose for us after or in between shots.
We would carry our own lights and stands, carry them on bikes.
I met Sridevi on numerous occasions. I have a huge collection of her pictures.
One day, a photographer friend of mine E V R Mohan saw this collection and asked me why I kept so many pictures of Sridevi.
I told him they were left over after I gave some to a few magazines.
E V R Mohan was not only a photographer, he was also a PRO (public relations officer). He knew many more magazines.
He showed my pictures to his contacts and my entire collection was published.
He sent my pictures to magazines in different languages. I am very thankful to Mohan for that gesture, which monetised my Sridevi collection.
Sridevi was humble.
She would be willing to shoot, but she would say, “This costume is not nice. I will change for the next shot.”
One day, I met her on a shoot, and as usual, she said she would give me time after the shoot.
A few of us were waiting.
After she finished her shoot, she changed, got into her car and left.
We were shocked, as she had never done that before.
Suddenly we saw the car stop at the studio gates. She did not even wait for the car to reverse. She got out and ran to us.
“I am very sorry, I totally forgot I had told you to wait,” she told us.
We told her it was okay and then she posed for us.
Those days, she would come on the sets with her mother.
The next day I met her at AVM studios and she apologised again. This happened in 1985.
The last time I met her was at the Madras Racing Club in Guindy (near Chennai).
I was leaving with my family when she was entering with her elder daughter. That girl is an exact replica of Sridevi.
I greeted her with a “Hi”, but she did not recognise me.
The minute I told her my name… in fact I did not even complete… when she heard my initials (I said, “I am AV…”), she broke into a wide smile. She did remember me.
I introduced my wife to her and she introduced her daughter to me.
We spoke for a few minutes and left. Jahnvi must have been 12 years old at that time.
When I heard about her death, I was very sad.
She was a simple, humble, good human being.
In spite of her superstar status, she was always polite and soft spoken.
She was a professional, and never kept anyone waiting.
She lived the life of a star.
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