Joined: 25 February 2008
Fashion designers have always depended on stars to up the glam quotient and build a brand name and designers fiercely guard their relationships with the stars.
Neeta Lulla had a dream relationship with Aishwarya Rai, which seems to have soured after years of working together. The actress is an important client for the designer. As Ash has weaned herself off Neeta, the designer has been trying to resurrect the relationship by sending her texts and trying to win her back.
Perhaps, Neeta should've thought about the repercussions when she got Ash's arch-rival Sushmita Sen to walk the ramp at last year's Fashion Week. This was akin to being disloyal, as far as Ash was concerned.
Now that Ash has four new films on hand (Guzaarish, Raavana, Action Replay and Enthiram), Neeta is nowhere in the picture. Ash has been opting for Manish Malhotra and Sabyasachi instead.
Given the Ash-Lulla history, this is a big snub for the designer. After all, when Yash Chopra introduced them 11 years ago, he predicted that it would be a lasting relationship. It did last - through films like Umrao Jaan, Devdas, Taal, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. Ash also weathered much criticism for Neeta's designs at Cannes.
Friction brewed on the sets of Jodhaa Akbar, when Ash and Neeta clashed over Ash's outfits in the film. The friendship soured and since then, Ash made it a point to keep Neeta Lulla away. She didn't attend Neeta's show at the fashion week last year, where she launched her daughter.
Our source said, "First, it was the Jodhaa-Akbar disaster. Ash maintained a stoic silence, and chose to be dignified. She didn't want it to affect the Jodhaa-Akbar promotions. Finally, Sushmita is Aishwarya's arch rival, and her walking the ramp for Neeta was the final nail in the coffin. This year, also Ash has given Neeta the cold shoulder. Sameera Reddy was the showstopper. Yes, Ash is shooting in Goa for Guzaarish, but so what? There were days when Ash would run from any the part of the world if Neeta called."
Neeta said, "Who has told you that I have been texting Aishwarya? She replies to my messages when I wish her on her birthday or Diwali." When we asked why she isn't Ash's favourite designer anymore, Neeta shot back, "Why don't you ask Aishwarya this before asking me?"
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