Neena Gupta, in a recent throwback, shared a decades old still from the sets of her film, Utsav. In memory of actor Shankar Nag, who co-starred in the Girish Karnad directorial, Neena recalled when she met him for the first time. The 1984 film which was produced by Shashi Kapoor also featured Rekha, Shekhar Suman, Amjad Khan and Anuradha Patel. In the latest Instagram post, Neena is sharing the frame with Shankar, an actor-director-producer who was a popular name in the Kannada industry. “A still from a beautiful film Utsav with Shankar Nag, miss you so much. Shankar bohat jaldi chhod gaye tum hamen (You left us too soon),” she wrote in her Instagram caption.
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Utsav, a period film, was an adaptation of Sanskrit drama titled Mrcchakatika by Sudraka. Shankar essayed the role of a thief in the film while Neena played the role of a courtesan.
In her recently launched memoir, Sach Kahun Toh: An Autobiography, Neena wrote about her bond with the late actor. She mentioned how the director, Girish ensured the two actors become good friends to avoid awkwardness while filming an intimate lovemaking scene. She wrote about how their interactions before the scene were cordial but not friendly. However, after they shot the scene, the two became comfortable around each other.
“I guess the awkwardness of doing a lovemaking scene with someone you have only just met can sometimes be the start of a beautiful friendship. There’s nothing like an actual sex scene on camera to forge a lifelong friendship,” she summed up her equation with him.
Describing the actor, Neena wrote, “He was a wonderful human being. He was very famous but he never put on any airs in front of his friends. He was a ‘yaaron ka yaar’. He never discriminated between friends who were famous and struggling even though he was such a successful person himself.”
Shankar’s wide range of filmography includes the popular series Malgudi Days, Ondanondu Kaladalli, Geetha, Nodi Swamy Navirodu Hige, Accident, Minchina Ota, among many others. He died in 1990 at the age of 35.