Konkona Sen Sharma found it intriguing to portray the “unusual” character of a mother convicted of murdering her own child in Meghna Gulzar’s “Talvar”, which is inspired by the sensational 2008 Aarushi Talwar-Hemraj case.
The 35-year-old actress said she could not have let go of the opportunity of playing Nupur, who along with husband Rajesh Talwar, is convicted in the double murder case, as such roles do not come her way every day.
“When Meghna offered me the film, I knew immediately I was on for it. I was like ‘Wow’. I found it unusual, different and interesting and one does not get offered interesting things anyway. It is not like one is getting brilliant characters every day,” Konkona told PTI.
The film revolves around three investigative theories, which were proposed over the course of the case.
Konkona found it fascinating how her character required three different portrayals, depending upon the three crime scenes, as each theory had a different say on the involvement of the parents in the murder.
“I was quite excited, when I was offered the role. I had to look at it as a film project and not really get into the real life aspect of it because it is an unusual kind of a role. The film is an investigative thriller.
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“It goes through three different lines of investigation— there is Noida police, then CBI 1 and CBI 2. There are three crime scenes that are presented. In one scenario, my character is guilty, in the other she could be an unwilling accomplice and in the third she could be innocent and that was very interesting as a performer to play, the same thing done differently at different times.”
The seven-year-old case continues to generate curiosity among people and evoke different reactions but Konkona insists she has no opinion on it as she feels no investigation has pointed 100 per cent in one direction.
“I don’t have a personal opinion on this case. My opinion is that I don’t know and how can you have an opinion when evidence does not point 100 per cent in any one direction. It has been compromised with.
“I feel people take it very lightly and not like it’s a murder accusation. They do this because they enjoy sensationalism. In my case and especially when one gets to know more about the case, you feel you actually don’t know. There are theories and possibilities definitely…,” she said.
Konkona did not have to go out of her way to prepare for her role as Meghna’s script helped her prepare a timeline of the events.
When asked if she met Aarushi’s mother, Konkona said she did not feel the need to meet the parents.
“I didn’t have to go through any kind of preparation because everything was done by Meghna. I just followed the demand of the script and there was so much information on internet.
“I did not meet the parents and I did not feel the need as well because it was written out in the script what they needed. From the script itself I could make my own timeline of the events,” she said.
Besides its controversial subject, Konkona feels “Talvar” should be watched for its cinematic prowess.
“As an actor I can say, through ‘Talvar’ we are trying to present different scenarios and that makes for a very good cinema. The movie and its different aspects will engage the audience and it is not just an emotional drama, it is an investigative thriller,” she said.
The actress said she never worried about uncomfortable questions regarding the case that would be directed towards her during the promotions.
She credited the film’s team and especially Vishal Bhardwaj, who has penned and co-produced the film, for re-assuring about the quality of the movie.
Konkona has earlier collaborated with Vishal in films like “Omkara”, “7 Khoon Maaf” and “Ek Thi Daayan”.
“I know different kind of questions would be asked but that is okay. I was relieved that I was working with the people I trusted. I knew that Vishal ji was involved so I was re-assured that I was in capable hands.
“I was confident that they would approach this film in a sensitive manner and I felt it would be a good quality product and of a great standard.”
Also starring Irrfan Khan and Neeraj Kabi in lead roles, “Talvar” is set to hit theatres on October 2. The film saw its world premiere at the ongoing Toronto International Film Festival.