By Subhash K Jha
On Tuesday Deepika Padukone got a surprise call from Singapore.
It was Rajnikanth, the Rana star himself, calling to reassure his leading lady that all was well with his health and with the project and that she should not give away her dates to another project.
Sounding relaxed, healed and content Rajni paid Deepika the best compliment of her life.
Says a source, â€œRajnikanth told Deepika she was the most beautiful actress of her generation. That made Deepikaâ€™s day, week and year.
Coming from an icon who has worked with heroines of every generation and from both Bollywood and South cinema Deepika felt 10-feet tall.
Rajnikanth also told her that he was looking forward to shooting with Deepika again and that whatever he had shot with her had come out really well. â€
Apparently Deepika assured Rajnikanth that she would be available for shooting whenever he was ready.
Says the source, â€œHe sounded very relaxed. And he told Deepika he couldnâ€™t return home right away due to the privacy factor. His fans wouldnâ€™t let hm rest if he went back to Chennai.
Rajni told Deepika that was the only reason why he couldnâ€™t return home and resume shooting right away. Deepika was extremely touched by his gesture. He is such a huge star. He didnâ€™t have to call her. But he did. And he also paid her the best compliment she has ever received. â€
Deepika confirms, â€œYes, we did talk. It was very sweet of him to call. â€
Further inquiry on why Rajnikanth rang up his leading lady from Singapore revealed the fact that that too many pessimistic readings of the mega-starâ€™s health are going around.
Says a source from the crew, â€œRajnikanth is ready to shoot. And he wanted to shoot down idle talk of his failing health.
Thatâ€™s why he called Deepika. Weâ€™ve shut down all shooting of Rana until Rajni returns. We couldâ€™ve shot with other actors. But we wanted to resume with Rajni only. â€
Dr Murli Manohar the co-producer Rana completely shoots down the rumours that the film has been shot with Rajnikanthâ€™s body-double in the iconic starâ€™s absence.
â€œNo no, weâ€™re very sure we will resume shooting Rana with Rajni-ji alone. Weâ€™ve shot a song with him and Deepika. Now we resume shooting in September. â€