The controversy-ridden movie, The Accidental Prime Minister, released today and director Vijay Ratnakar Gutte is keeping his fingers crossed despite it opening to houseful theatres today. Having been tagged as propaganda in the political arena, the movie nursed sprouting tensions for the filmmakers and the cast alike, long before its release.
In a recent interview with IANS, the director revealed that getting the right actors for the narrative was a dilemma which he and his casting team went through initially. Speaking on the same, he told IANS, “I spent around nine months to cast actors in the film. Since the film is based on real characters and people know them all, they live in the public memory, as a film director, I had to choose the right actors for it. There is a thin line between caricature and capturing the essence of the character. Only good actors can execute the latter.”
However, he found support in his casting team and revealed, “Hansal Mehta and his team who are in the business for the last 20 years helped me to get the actors I wanted. It was such a daunting task. The most difficult casting was of Sanjaya Baru, which is played by Akshaye Khanna.”
The film is based on a book by Sanjaya Baru with the same title. Sanjay was the former media advisor of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. In the film, Anupam Kher is seen essaying the role of Dr. Manmohan Singh while Akshaye Khanna is seen playing the role of Baru. The movie also features actors Suzanne Bernert, Aahana Kumra and Arjun Mathur.
Given that Baru’s character has been shown more flamboyant than how he actually is in real life, Vijay said in his defence, “Yes, there are many fictional elements that I added on the portrayal of Akshaye’s character because I wanted it to look entertaining. In real life, Baru is intelligent, and so is Akshaye’s character in the film but I wanted him to look in a certain way. So I made him wear good clothes and added some swag. It is entertaining that way, but the essence of the character is intact. The authenticity should be there in the story, in the essence of the character… the visual presentation can be entertaining. At the end of the day, we make cinema to entertain people.”
Amidst all the obstacles, the film hit the cinemas today.