Mumbai: Vidya Balan has opted out of a biopic based on the life of controversial poet Kamala Das, Aami. While reports allege that the actor stepped back due to a right-wing scare, the actor maintains her stance is due to a difference of opinion with the director.
It was earlier reported that Balan will play Das, a true iconoclast who known for her controversial and bold work and went on to embrace Islam some time before her death in 2009. She also changed her name to Kamala Surayya. While local media has reported that Vidya has refused to play the role after pressure from Shiv Sena, a source close to the actor said she opted out of Aami for she and the director, Kamaluddin Muhammed, had divergent approaches to the process.
“The powerhouse performer, who enjoys getting under the skin of her characters, was excited to headline the Malayalam film Aami and had even started her prep for the same a while ago. It is a well-known fact that Vidya is an actor who likes to be fully prepared before she steps on set. She is one actor who is willing to go that extra mile to own the character. In fact, she enjoys the process of film-making in its entirety, spending time with the director and writers and collaborating as a unit, which wasn’t the scenario with this film,” the source close to the actor said.
Maintaining that Vidya and director Kamal looked at the film differently, the source added, ” Vidya respects the director and the entire team working on the film. However, the director and she had very different approaches to the film. Therefore, she opted out of the film in the most amicable and professional manner and any other reason being cited is untrue”.
The director Kamaluddin Muhammed, better known as Kamal, said that Balan was initially thrilled to essay the role of Kamala, known for her bold writings and utterances. But she changed the shooting schedule of the movie titled Aami twice citing inconveniences.