Mallika Hamida Banu
Played by Poonam Sinha
Role: Hamida Banu is the third most important character in the film.
About Poonam: It was very exciting to work in a film after so many years. Plus, it was an honour to work with Ashutosh Gowariker. Not in my wildest dreams did I think I would be a part of this film. When Ashutosh called my home, I thought it was for my husband (veteran actor and BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha) or sons. But when he met me, he told me that he wanted me to play Hamida Banu. I spoke to my husband about the role and he was very supportive.
Of course, I was nervous during the shoot. But I was not trembling, nor did I fumble with my dialogues. I just tried to forget that people were watching me.
I had to work on the language and the pronunciation of some Urdu words. But we had an Urdu teacher on the sets, who would correct us if we spoke wrongly.
I have seen Hrithik from the time he was a baby. All these kids, including Aishwarya and Abhishek Bachchan, are very good and loving; they come from a very good family.
It was a treat working on this film. Everything was organised, all the research was done thoroughly.
We had a very natural look in the film -- there were no kajals or false eyelashes. We could wear only nude lipstick.
I missed my sindoor, so I would apply it on the top of my head, and cover it with my dupatta.
Also read: 'Filmmaking is not for the faint-hearted'