Milan Luthria, the director of The Dirty Picture, admits that his lead actor Vidya Balan’s recent illness has resulted in a slight delay in the shoot. “We were to wrap up the film by the end of the week but now we will finish it next week,” he shrugs, insisting that the fall in Vidya’s haemoglobin levels wasn’t simply the result of over-exertion as was reported.
Going by the Association’s rules, no member of the cast or crew can be made to work beyond 12 hours, so it wasn’t the number of hours she put in that lead to her collapse, but the intensity she brings to her performance.”
He points out that this has always been a problem with Vidya. When she gets into a role, she doesn’t sleep well, forgets to eat healthy and is completely into her character.
“It was building up over a period of six months. The Dirty Picture is a film that pushed her to work on her dancing, drained her emotionally and called for seven different looks that not only required hours of make-up, but at times, face and body prosthetics too. The doctor says it’s a mix of fatigue, lack of sleep and working under difficult conditions that took a toll on her health.”
Vidya was rushed to Lilavati Hospital last Thursday where it was detected that her red blood cell count was alarmingly low. She was discharged a couple of days later, but has reportedly been put under house arrest by her concerned parents. “I met Vidya in hospital and she was laughing about all the worry she has caused. She’s a strong-willed girl and she’ll bounce back quickly,” Milan asserts.