Signing an Aamir Khan film is definitely a boon for any actress. And when news spread that the producer of Aamir’s next film Ghajini was on the lookout for two actresses to be cast opposite the Khan, every actress worth her mascara tried her luck. Initially, Ayesha Takia was supposed to do one of the lead roles, but she later backed out of the film for reasons unknown. Then there was news that Kangana Ranaut had signed the film, however, when the actress went to town proclaiming her good fortune, Aamir reportedly was quite miffed with her and decided to drop the idea of casting her. Priyanka Chopra was then said to be next in line for the same role, and the actress reports claimed, was very keen to sign the film. Unfortunately, that was not to be.
South actress Asin was signed on, much to everyone’s surprise. And now that latest is that Jiah Khan has also been roped in. The source confirmed, “Yes, Jiah Khan has been signed on as one of the leading ladies along with Asin. In the storyline, one actress plays a part in the past and the other actress plays a part in the future. While Asin has been roped in to play the first part, Jiah has been cast in the latter role.”
For Jiah, this is yet another feather in her cap. After debuting in the Amitabh Bachchan starrer Nishabd , the actress seems to be bagging films only with the best. Though Jiah herself was unavailable for comment, we must say, she is one lucky girl!
Jiah’s real name is Nafisa, but she thinks Jiah sounds sexier and hence decided to adopt the new moniker. She got it from the Angelina Jolie movie Gia . She merely changed the name a bit to make it sound “more exciting”… as in Ji…aaah! This actress surely knows what works!
Jiah is the daughter of actress Rabia who now writes scripts for television in the UK and concepts for BBC. Jiah was born in New York, but brought up in London. She went back to New York to study acting at Lee Strasberg, but quit when she bagged the role in Ramgopal Varma’s Nishabd . While skeptics claimed that the youngster might not be able to make it in Bollywood, the actress is proving them wrong and how.
Jiah has always been wild about Bollywood –in fact, she admits that as a kid she’d wear salwaar kameezs and drive her teachers made by speaking Hindi. She claims she was very inspired by Ramu’s hit Rangeela .
Jiah claims she actually has a video of herself and her younger two sisters dancing like Urmila Matonkdar in Rangeela . Her two younger sisters are actually her step sisters – Jiah and they have different fathers.
Jiah has gone on record to state that she gives very little importance to her father who is an American Indian Muslim, and left her mother when Jiah was just three months old. In fact, they have never bothered to meet each other –but it bothers Jiah to still have his name of her passport!
By the way, Jiah’s Aamir connection goes way back. Jiah’s mom Rabin was a Christian girl who came from Agra to Bombay to pursue a career in acting. Tahir Hussain, Aamir father, discovered her when she was in Dehra Dun, and she lived with Aamir’s family. In fact, Aamir’s mother Zeenat taught her how to conduct herself as an actress and speak Urdu. It was only later that Jiah’s mom converted to Islam.
Jiah was supposed to debut in Mahesh Bhatt’s Tumsa Nahin Dekha , but things didn’t work out. She had even shot for a couple of weeks after the screen test, but that was not to be. Jiah claims that the character was far to mature for her, and that was the reason she opted out of that project.