Five years after Parineeta, Vidya Balan and her mentor, Pradeep Sarkar, recently got back together to shoot a hair oil ad. The actress admits she was really nervous and insisted on a rehearsal before the first take.
“It’s been a long time since I worked with Dada and I was wondering if the connect we had shared was still as strong, if I could understand what he wanted as easily as before, without words being spoken,” she points out.
To her relief, nothing had changed. “It was like cycling, a skill you don’t forget once you’ve learnt it,” she laughs. “And with Natti (cinematographer N Nataraja Subramaniam) behind the camera, it was almost like we were back to the Parineeta days.”The modern-day Lolita would love to do a film with Dada next. Sarkar himself is keen. Says Sarkar, "Vidya has grown as an actress since her debut in 2005. She was ‘bindaas’ (uninhibited) in Ishqiya and awesome in Paa. In fact, Paa should have been called Maa. Whatever she does, Vidya does with pure intensity and is a true Indian beauty. You can’t take the Indianess out of her."
Script not ready
It is learnt that he wants to make a costume drama with her. Balan doesn’t think he’s ready with a script yet, but would like to do a film revolving around relationships with him. “May be a love story, but I couldn’t say if it would be another period film or a historical,” she says.
Has she seen Sarkar’s recently released Lafangey Parindey? “Dada didn’t want me to see it till he asked me to. I wasn’t called for the screening, I’m still waiting,” she smiles.
As she waits for Sarkar’s call, Balan has signed a thriller to be shot in Kolkata by another Bengali, Sujoy Ghosh. “It’s an exciting script and we’ll be filming in Kolkata for a month-and-a-half during Durga puja. I’m told the city dons new clothes to welcome Maa and I can’t wait to see it. May be I could go ‘pandal’ hopping and visit Kalighat. That’s a must, even during the crazy festive season,” she insists.
Casting for the film is still on. It would have some Bengali actors with Balan probably as the only big Bollywood name. The star draw, huh? “I’d prefer the script rather than the star to be the crowd-puller,” she retorts.