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20 years of Company: Why Isha Koppikar had second thoughts about doing the 'Khallas' song

Ram Gopal Varma's gangster thriller, which was released on 12 April 2002, has now achieved cult status.

Suyog Zore

Ram Gopal Varma's iconic gangster thriller Company — which was released on 12 April 2002 — celebrated its 20th anniversary yesterday. 

The film, which stars Ajay Devgn, Vivek Oberoi, Mohanlal and Manisha Koirala, has achieved cult status over the years. Apart from its stellar cast, the film is also remembered for the chart-topper 'Khallas'. Isha Koppikar, who will be seen in Varma's series Dhahanam, earned the sobriquet 'Khallas Girl' after featuring in the song.

During a recent event in Mumbai, Varma spilt the beans about casting the actress for the number. "I still remember when I first offered this song to her, she was not sure about doing it. She asked me, 'Do you think I should do this song?' Now that was the height of innocence to ask me this question."

"I told her that this was not a regular item song, it's a very hard-hitting track that also has a scope for showing a lot of expressions. Then she took maybe two minutes and agreed to do it," he said.

Koppikar, who was also present, said, "It's always a pleasure to work with RGV. He is one of a kind. As he said, initially I was very apprehensive to be part of the now-iconic song. Because before 'Khallas' I had only played the-girl-next-door kind of roles in south Indian films. And RGV wanted someone who looked hot. I immediately thought I was the most inappropriate person for such a song. And frankly, it was also a revelation for me to see myself like that."

"I remember he showed me the song in his home theatre. I couldn't believe that it was me on the screen. It was unbelievable for me because I had never thought I could look like that," she added.

Company revolves around two formidable rival gangsters who want to rule the Mumbai underworld. The film received critical acclaim and went on to become a box office hit.