Action packed Aishwarya!
There are so many rumors in town, though Mani Ratnam had to be protected from exertion because of the health scare he suffered during the first schedule of Raavana in Kerala’s Chalakudy forests, the maverick filmmaker was, in fact, in far better health after the scare.
“After his first heart attack there was a blockage in his artery which got detected only when Mani sir was hospitalised the second time. He got the blockage removed and came out feeling far fitter. So much so that he was the most agile and athletic person in our unit and could climb the steep, slippery rocks faster than anyone else.” Sources disclosed.
Now Mani is so confident of his health that he intends to make at least two films every year. In fact just to give his leading lady Aishwarya Rai Bachchan company, Mani would accompany her up the rocky forest terrain, which she had to climb twice, once with her hubby Abhishek Bachchan, who plays the fugitive kidnapper in the Hindi version, and the second time with Vikram for Tamil version .
“Since we were shooting in marshland, we’d often have our lunch laid out in the middle of marshy water on a floating table where Mani would happily join us. In fact, the so-called health scare just made him friendlier. He wouldn’t allow any of us actors to do anything grueling without him joining us.” sources said. All the three principal actors Abhishek, Aishwarya and Vikram suffered serious injuries and viral illnesses, it was Aishwarya who proved to be the toughest among the three.
Sources added, “Mountaineering pegs were hammered into the rocks for the actors to climb up, but that didn’t make the steep path less dangerous. Aishwarya climbed up the dangerous path twice every day, once with Abhishek, then with Vikram. She would go right up, come down and then be ready to do it all over again. So much so that by the end of the day she needed no makeup to show cuts and bruises. They were for real.”
“I’ve never seen any actress do the stunts Aishwarya Rai has done. And I’ve never seen any actress look so beautiful in such trying circumstances.” Vikram confirmed.