Vidya Balan is extremely happy with an all around positive response that she has got for her role of an unwed mother in Paa. While keeping her emotions in check and not allowing all the appreciation to make her go overtly gaga, Vidya does admit though that such huge response has come to her four long years after her debut effort Parineeta.
“I guess the wait has been worth it”, says Vidya who plays the mother of a 12 year old kid (played by Amitabh Bachchan) suffering from Progeria in Paa, “I was doing films and by God’s grace most of them were successful as well. However, the kind of respect that is coming the way of everyone associated with Paa is overwhelming, heart warming and above all humbling.”
It is this respect factor that has been the biggest moment for Vidya. When the film’s trial was held a few days back, she was convinced that the film would certainly be remembered for its sincerity, honesty and truthfulness. Though box office factor wasn’t to be ignored, she along with director Balki knew that at the least film would see good respectability coming its way.
“One can’t say much about box office in any case because sometimes even the most quintessential commercial flicks don’t really click with the audiences. However, you instinctively know whether your film has turned out to be a quality outing or not. I remember the days of Lage Raho Munnabhai when we came out of the first screening. Along with Raj Kumar Hirani, I knew that we had made a good film. Same was the case with Paa“, details Vidya.
Now she is eagerly awaiting the box office response for Paa. Given the fact that it is coming a week after De Dana Dan and a week before Rocket Singh – Salesman Of The Year, Paa has to score and do that really fast.
“I have been told though that the film has been accepted well by the audience and along with critical appreciation, it is also showing good word of mouth from those who have seen it”, she says with that characteristic smile of hers.
What she says does hold good ground. Though the opening wasn’t exceptional (as expected due to its theme), the film has shown a constant increase in crowd inflow with every passing show. Says a trade insider, “The occupancy for Paa on Saturday is almost double than that of Friday. Everyone thought that the film was mainly targeting the class audiences in big cities but it is doing well even in interiors like Nagpur and other cities and towns.”
Meanwhile, Vidya’s phone hasn’t stopped ringing. “Such appreciation is always welcome. Ever since the film’s premiere, there have been congratulatory calls, which is heart warming. I have been literally glued to my cell-phone for last 3 days at stretch and I am certainly not complaining.”
Given the fact that her last film Kismat Konnection (2008) was a success and so was Bhool Bhulaiyaa (2007), she would be used to such adulation, isn’t it?
“Honestly speaking, there have been good words but such volume of calls is a first”, she confesses, “I remember getting quite a few messages during Bhool Bhulaiyaa or Kismat Konnection. However, so many people actually making an effort and giving me a call reminds me of Parineeta days. Paa has fetched me the best response since my debut film.”
With her much in news Ishqiya round the corner that has an author backed role reserved for her, one waits to see if Vidya gets a further one up over Paa and Parineeta in weeks to come. Starring Naseruddin Shah and Arshad Warsi as the male protagonists, Abhishek Chaubey directed Ishqiya is produced by Vishal Bhardwaj & Raman Maroo and sees a 15th January release.