Madhoo Shah Says Her Equation With Mani Ratnam Soured As She Didn't Give Him Credit For Her Stardom

Madhoo Shah opened up about her strained relationship with filmmaker, Mani Ratnam over not giving him due credit for her stardom.


By Srijony Das Last Updated:


Madhoo Shah Says Her Equation With Mani Ratnam Soured As She Didn't Give Him Credit For Her Stardom

Madhoo Shah, a.k.a Madhoo rose to prominence with her stellar performance in the 1992-hit romantic film, Roja. Among all the other films that she has worked on, it was no doubt her portrayal in Roja that simply cemented her name in the pan-Indian film industry. And now, the actress opened up about her charred relationship with the filmmaker, Mani Ratnam, who guided her to not just a massively successful film, but a prolific career with impeccable stardom.

Madhoo talks about her soured equation with Mani Ratnam

In an interaction with Sidharth Kannan, Madhoo opened up about her strained relationship with eminent filmmaker, Mani Ratnam, despite having worked and delivered massive blockbusters at the box-office with him. The actress remarked that it was her wrongful attitude of not giving due credit to him for her stardom and success, that they had a fallout. She mentioned:

“There was an element of ‘I.’ I refused to give credit to anyone and people got pissed off because Mani Ratnam sir deserved the credit. You liked my simplicity, my performance in Roja but he was the head of the crew, he was experienced and genius, he deserved the credit. Today I say this after realising it but I should have said it at that time. Even after 20 years after the release of Roja, the audience appreciate it and whenever I hear that I say ‘Mani sir you gave me an identity’.”

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Madhoo recalls her thorny statement in an interview was misquoted and caused the rift

Moving further in the interaction, Madhoo recalled a particular interview of her post the success of Roja, when a statement spoken by her was misquoted, causing her rift with Mani Ratnam. The actress added that the remark reflected a sense of ingratitude on her part to credit the filmmaker for making her a star. In her words:

“My interview came in a very popular magazine. In that interview I don’t remember the question but someone asked me ‘he made you a star’ or something like that, and I said that ‘nobody makes a film to make somebody else a star. I fit in the role. Mani sir didn’t make the film to make me a star. He made this amazing film and I happen to be in it and I worked. It clicked.’ The headline they carried was, ‘Mani sir did not make me a star’ or something like that. When I saw that, I was like I didn’t say this.”


Madhoo claims she was a simple-minded girl who acted out of insecurity

Concluding the interaction, Madhoo reflected that she was a simple-minded newcomer at the time of the release of her film, Roja, who was insecure about her foot fall in the film industry. She further added that whatever was her statements, was purely out of her pain, wherein she didn’t want to share her success with anyone. Adding how it all went wrong because the media twisted her words, Madhoo narrated:

“All those people who are in the industry know how media can twist things but even I would not give you the benefit of the doubt. I think my attitude was very innocent. I was a simple girl who acted out of my pain and insecurity and created a wall that said, ‘F*** off. I am me, who helped me?’ That was my attitude and that pissed off many people. I didn’t make many good bonds and which is why I wasn’t repeated in many films.”

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Madhoo once opened up quitting the film industry at the peak of her career

Previously, Madhoo graced the panel discussion at Prime Video’s Maitri: Female First Collective, and highlighted the partial gender dynamics she has witnessed in the film industry. In a space majorly dominated by male actors, the diva revealed that the primary reason behind her quitting the film industry at the peak of her career was due to getting type-casted to similar roles repeatedly. She added that she was unhappy with such a routine and thought it best to quit.


What do you think about Madhoo’s revelations? Let us know.

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