When the trailer of Begum Jaan arrived on our screens, we were blown away by the way Vidya Balan delivered powerful dialogues, her mannerism as the madam of a brothel and the way she could detach herself the moment director Srijit Mukerji said, ‘cut’. In the making video, Vidya reiterates that Begum Jaan is as relatable as any other character in any film. Explaining why she thinks all of us are Begum Jaan, she said, “Begum Jaan is the lead of the pack, she is a no-nonsense person. For her, business is business. At the same time, she realises that no one comes without flaws. How different is Begum Jaan from any of us? I think we all are guarding our bodies, which is also our territories.”
She continued, “There is one more awakening and awareness in this film that on my body, I have the first right. I have the right to decide who I share it with, what I do with it. Don’t judge me. There is a Begum Jaan in everyone of us, every second girl.” As the story revolves around how the whores living in a brothel fight for their home, which apparently is being divided by the India-Pakistan border. Begum Jaan is the Hindi remake of a Bengali award-winning film, Rajkahini, which starred Rituparna Sengupta. In a recent interview, Vidya said that she is not so keen on remakes. However, she adds, “Sometimes your greed as an actor overpowers you and every rule that you make for yourself.” We are happy Begum Jaan could do that.
While imagining someone other than Vidya in the lead of the film is difficult for us, Srijit clarified that for him as well, Vidya was the first and the last choice. He said, “Vidya was destined to do this film. How destiny has its own play and how eventually with lot of turns Vidya happens to be Begum Jaan, is incredible.” Also featuring Gauahar Khan, Ila Arun, Pallavi Sharda, Naseeruddin Shah and Chunky Pandey, the film is set to arrive in theaters on April 14.