For Lagoo's co-workers and close friends, the loss is more personal.
Reema Lagoo death: Mohnish Bahl, Mahesh Manjrekar, Shivaji Satam share their memories
18 May 2017 12:22 IST
Updated : 13:52 IST
The sudden passing away of veteran actress Reema Lagoo has saddened film lovers across the nation. The artist was known for her impressive performances in mainstream Hindi and Marathi films. She earned popularity, specifically, as the lovable on-screen mother.
While the entire industry has expressed sadness at this loss, it is a lot more personal for her co-stars who shared a close bond with her. Actor Mohnish Bahl is one such actor who feels that he has lost a friend who scored high at being a good human. The actor shared screenspace with Lagoo in memorable hits like Maine Pyar Kiya (1989), Hum Aapke Hain Koun...! (1994), Hum Saath Saath Hain (1999) and Vaastav: The Reality (1999) among several other films.
“It is very sad indeed. I believe she was working today, every day. More than her memorable films and her body of work, people like us, who have spent time with her on the sets, remember her for the kind of human being she came across as. (A) Very warm and graceful person. You didn’t feel uncomfortable with her. She commanded respect. One feels one has lost an elder friend,” said Bahl while speaking to Cinestaan.com.
He elaborated by stating the absence of barriers around her. “She came across with so much ease. If you go on sets and see Reema ji, you won’t feel hesitant to tell her, ‘Chalo chai peete hain (Let’s have tea).’ There were no barriers around her. It feels that a friend of yours is no more.”
It is not possible for Bahl to single out one memorable moment with the actress, but there is one memory that remains etched in him. “We had an apartment opposite her building. I used to stay there whenever I had a late night shoot along with my family. In the mornings, I would see my wife and Reema ji waving out to each other. These are little things that become memorable. This was around 15 years ago. We hadn’t met since years because we hadn’t worked together for long,” he said.
Filmmaker Mahesh Manjrekar directed her in a few films. Of these, Vaastav (1999) is considered one of her best performances. For Manjrekar too, the news of Reema Lagoo's death is more of a personal loss. “She was one of the finest actors we ever had. Ever! The way she approached all her roles was phenomenal. The loss is huge and the loss is personal because more than an actor she was family. She was very close to me,” he said.
Veteran actor Shivaji Satam has acted along side Lagoo in quite a few films. The most notable ones are Vaastav and the Marathi movie, Maan Sanman (2009). “We have lost a wonderful artist and I have lost a very dear friend. We were very good friends. I have a lot of fond memories of her. We used to be so happy meeting each other. We shared the same group of Marathi theatre artists.”