The first choice for the Jayalalitha bio-pic being directed by A L Vijay was Vidya Balan. Says a source very close to the project, “Vidya is of Tamilian descent and intellectually and emotionally equipped to play a figure as formidable as ‘Amma’. However she for reasons best known to her opted out leaving the coast clear for Kangana Ranaut.”
We now know that Balan has a very legitimate reason for not playing Jayalalitha. She is committed to play Indira Gandhi in a web series to be produced by her husband Siddharth Roy Kapur, and fully immersed in the process of understanding the heart mind and politics of India’s first Iron Lady.
Says a source close to the Indira Gandhi project, “Vidya wants no distractions. She is unlikely to accept any movie offers while she plays Mrs Gandhi. She wants to get Mrs G’s physicality, her body language and speech pattern right. She is working on it.”
No attempt would be made by Vidya Balan to physically resemble the original. Some years ago when Manisha Koirala had been signed to play Mrs Gandhi for a film that was to be directed by N Chandra, the makers had even arranged for a prosthetic nose for her.
That project never happened.