Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Rasika Dugal are gearing up for their next film based on the life of controversial poet and writer Saadat Hasan Manto. While Nawazuddin plays Manto, Rasika is playing his wife, Safia Manto in this film to be helmed by Nandita Das. As a director, Nandita is leaving no stone unturned to ensure that her references are accurate from all sources that she gets the look and ear of the film right.
A source says, “While Nawazuddin has enough material to draw from for his character, Rasika is doing her bit to get into the character of Safia Manto. It was a daunting task for her to research on Safia as not much is written about her. Nandita did her best to provide Rasika with the inputs with regards to Safia’s personality based on her extensive research before scripting the film. To know more about Safia, Rasika requested Nandita to allow her to touch base with Manto’s daughters Nighat, Nuzhat and Nusrat in Lahore, Pakistan. They could give Rasika insights about their mothers personality that would help her build a character.”
Talking about it, Rasika says, “I spoke to Nuzhat before we started filming. She had seen the photos of my first look which came out a few days back and I was delighted that she also thought that I resembled her mother. It meant a lot to me. It was such a warm conversation. Besides speaking about Safia and Manto we also bonded over our love for Punjabi. After all they must feel that their story is in good hands and that we will put in our best to tell the story sensitively.”