Filmmaker Kamal’s appalling statement about Bollywood actress Vidya Balan has shocked many in the film fraternity. According to a report published in Times of India, Kamal had a strange relationship with Vidya Balan. The actress was supposed to play the lead in his film Aami, a biopic on veteran writer Kamala Surayya. However, Vidya chose to back out of the film and Kamal eventually began the shoot of the film with Manju Warrier in the lead. But doubts were raised about whether Manju's physique suits that of Kamala.
Though Vidya was the first choice to play poet-iconoclast Madhavikutty, the central character in Aami, the director himself has come out now, saying that Manju has done the role beautifully, and it was all for the good that Vidya is not a part of this movie. The reason he has cited has, however, appalled many. He made bizarre remarks on Vidya Balan in a recent interview given to Azhimukham. The veteran director said that if Vidya had done the movie, sexuality would have crept in. Manju is ideal for the role, since Kamala was essentially a Malayali woman! He has also added that Manju stepped into the character within two days.
“She surprised all of us. Within two days she transformed into Madhavikutty. Manju was able to relate and portray the simple ‘Thrissurkaari’ (woman from Thrissur) that the poet was. This resulted in a Madhavikutty that was more like what I had in mind and Manju has definitely been able to do it better than Vidya,” he said.
Ironically, Madhavikutty was known for writing boldly and explicitly about female sexuality, which was (read is) considered to be a taboo topic for women writers.