Ma Anand Sheela's advice to Priyanka Chopra, Alia Bhatt if they want to play her: 'Move away from scandal'
Ma Anand Sheela, the controversial former aid to Bhagwan Shri Rajneesh (later known as Osho), has commented on the two rival biopics being made about her; one, a film starring Priyanka Chopra, and another a show, reportedly starring Alia Bhatt.
In a new interview, Ma Anand Sheela said that she hopes the two projects are able to avoid focusing only on the scandals that she has been involved in.
Asked about the narrative projects being made about her, she told journalist Puja Talwar, "Well, I sometimes chuckle. Sometimes they will have to do deep searching into my character. They have to move a little bit away from scandal. And I don't know if they can. And if they don't, I take it as an impression of me they are doing."
Sheela rose to prominence after appearing in the 2018 Netflix documentary series Wild Wild Country, which focused on the ashram that Rajneesh set up in Oregon with Sheela's assistance, and the massive scandal that forced them to shut down, and caused irreparable damage to their relationship.
Sheela also appeared this year in Searching for Sheela, a one-hour documentary executive produced by Shakun Batra. She said that she hasn't seen it in its entirety, but only fast-forwarded to her own portions, to ensure that her words weren't misrepresented.
Shakun Batra is the man behind the purported Alia Bhatt project. He spoke to Hindustan Times about it earlier this year, and said, "It's an ambitious show, it's something that's very close to my heart..." He said that he was ready to 'jump back into development' on the show after completing work on his upcoming film, starring Deepika Padukone.
Sheela had previously said that she hasn't given Priyanka permission to play her on-screen. She told Hindustan Times, "I told her I do not give her permission to do [the] film because I have not chosen her... In Switzerland, we send legal notices very simply. I sent her an email which is accepted there as legal." Asked if she'd heard back, she said, "No, never. Not even a courtesy letter that they received my notice but that’s not an issue, maybe she never had the opportunity to meet me or make time to meet me and it is no big issue... not everybody has the time to meet me."