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Saira Banu, in a recent post, reminisced about her journey in the film industry and the fascinating story of how she landed her debut role in the film “Junglee” alongside the legendary Shammi Kapoor. Sharing a bit of her past on Tuesday, Saira Banu took a stroll down memory lane and offered a behind-the-scenes look at how she became part of the world of cinema, all while giving credit to her mother for a warm reception in the industry.
In her Instagram post, Saira Banu shared a couple of images. The first one showcased the official movie poster of “Junglee,” where she starred alongside Shammi Kapoor. The second picture, however, featured the timeless beauty holding a rose, elegantly dressed in a green saree with a white blouse, her long hair enhancing her grace.
In the heartfelt caption accompanying the post, Saira Banu recounted how she received film offers from well-known South Indian studios, such as A.V.M. and GEMINI, and had the privilege of working with eminent filmmakers like Kamal Amrohi, Ramanand Sagar, B.R. Chopra, and the illustrious S. Mukherjee of Filmalaya. These filmmakers were known for delivering hits like ‘LOVE IN SIMLA’ and ‘DIL DEKE DEKHO,’ introducing accomplished heroines Sadhana and Asha Parekh to the industry.
This warm reception in the film industry was significantly attributed to her being the daughter of ‘Pari Chehra’ Naseem Banu. The anticipation surrounding Naseemji’s daughter added an air of excitement and expectation – the curiosity of how promising her daughter would be. Saira Banu then shared the intriguing story of her almost casting alongside Sunil Dutt in the grand color project “HUM HINDUSTANI,” directed by Ram Mukerji (Rani Mukerji’s father). However, the role required a mature actor to complement the hero’s scholarly character.
It was during this time that Mukherjee Uncle, with his insightful advice, suggested considering his brother Subodh Mukherjee’s upcoming project, “JUNGLEE.” The role in “JUNGLEE” seemed tailor-made for Saira Banu, given her own spirited and mischievous nature. She was a delightful blend of a young woman who loved climbing trees in the garden and having lunch perching in the branches. At the same time, she could transform into a shy recluse when guests arrived at her home. This duality of her personality remains a defining trait to this day – a recluse and an outgoing LEO.
To prepare her for “JUNGLEE,” the team familiarized her with the lights and camera. Mukherjee Uncle guided her, placing her in front of the camera and encouraging her to relax and speak freely. In a moment etched in her memory, Saira Banu asked if she could recite a line in English that had left a deep impression on her. She recited, “It is a breach of good manners to inflict upon another the irritating necessity of deciphering an ill-written scrawl.” This phrase, often given as homework in school when students had untidy handwriting, she delivered in a matter-of-fact manner.
In the closing remarks of her post, Saira Banu promised to share more about her first scene in “Junglee,” a moment that remains dear to her heart. Her journey in the world of cinema, as she recounted, is a captivating tale of chance, family ties, and the unique blend of qualities that make her who she is today.