After teaming up for three films, it seems surprising that Sanjay Leela Bhansali is not quite done with Deepika Padukone yet. One would think he has extracted all the talent and screen presence there is to get from her after Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram Leela, Bajirao Mastani and now Padmaavat, but the director disagrees. “There is a lot more to her. Lots! Deepika is one of the finest artistes I’ve worked with. Such thehrao and such grace! She never surrenders to melodrama even when there is ample temptation to do so. Look at the scene where she gives a speech in front of the women before they commit jauhar. Such control, restraint and so much emotive power without tripping over. I was so overwhelmed by how she handled the scene that I gave her a Rs 500 note after she finished it. I am sure that token of my appreciation is more valuable and precious to her than the entire remuneration she got for the film,” he says.
Bhansali sees glimpses of three legendary actresses in Deepika. He says, “From some angles, she reminds me of Vyjayanthimalaji. Sometimes she reminds me of Hemaji. And the grace with which she performed the Ghoomar dance reminds me of Waheedaji. I strongly believe Deepika has the potential to join the ranks of our legendary actresses.”