New Delhi: Pakistani actress Mahira Khan, best known for her sensitive portrayal of Khirad in TV drama 'Humsafar', says she would love to work in Bollywood and has directors like Vishal Bhardwaj, Mani Ratnam and Imtiaz Ali on her wish list.
"I loved 'Highway'. It was amazing. I have watched Imtiaz Ali's other films too and he is one of my favourite Bollywood directors, besides Vishal Bhardwaj and Mani Ratnam. I think these filmmakers elevate an actor's performance. They actually work on their actors and help them give their best. I am very much open to Bollywood and would love to work in great stories," Mahira said in an interview.
Her 'Humsafar' co-star Fawad Khan has already made inroads in Bollywood with a successful debut in 'Khoobsurat' opposite Sonam Kapoor.
The actress, 30, who is in India to meet her fans following Humsafar's successful run on Zindagi channel, said she was going through a sad phase in her life while filming the romantic show about a couple torn apart by circumstances.
"I had a personal loss during the shooting and then there were many other personal tensions going on so it was a sad time. I used to come on the sets being low but the people I worked with made it better for me.
"It was a happy set and Fawad and I used to laugh after every shot even after the crying scenes. So, that helped me through. I also feel subconsciously my sadness helped me perform Khirad as her story was a tragic one and needs a lot of emotions," she said.
Mahira is amazed with the response she has got in India as the actress did not expect people to recognise her on streets. "I thought I would go shopping and roam around as no one will identify me but as soon as I got in a mall, I saw people calling me Khirad and coming to me. It was surreal. I feel I am at home and not in some other country," the actress said.
Mahira says though she has been appreciated for her acting, she is not very confident about her performances. "My directors are always more confident about me doing a role than I am. I always feel I can do better or that I did not get it right. Then I rush to my directors for their opinion. I am always doubtful about my takes and shots. I always need assurance," she said.
"I go ballistic. I would message my director telling him or her that let's reshoot because I am not satisfied. I understand we cannot be good in every scene but I take that pressure on myself too much," she said.
The 'Bol' actress says a good performance comes only when you fall in love with the character you are playing onscreen. "The most vital thing for an actor to deliver a great performance is to be honest to the role he or she is playing. You have to fall for the role and feel as if it is you. I become my character and get attached to them."
But getting too close to a role has its own pitfalls which Mahira discovered while filming 'Humsafar'. "In 'Humsafar' I did not want Khirad to go back to Asher. I kept saying that to Sarmad (director) but the story is a writer's vision so as actors we cannot interfere with that.
"But I felt like that because Khirad had become a part of me. In another serial of mine, same thing happened. Then a senior co-star advised me to maintain a distance between myself and my on-screen characters," Mahira said.