From playing the distressed-yet-rebel elderly character of Shri B V Pradhan in ‘Saaransh’ (1984) to enacting the former Pradhan Mantri Dr. Manmohan Singh in this political Hindi-English biopic movie, ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’ seasoned NSD alumnus actor Anupam Kher seems to have come a full circle.
“It is possibly the most difficult role I have played in my entire career, because Dr Singh is a high-profile current political personality,” Kher said.
Following the release of its trailer, the otherwise diligently made realistic feature film directed by Vijay Gutte (his debut) is already facing furious salvos of protest from certain Congress party leaders who are demanding that they be allowed to watch a preview of the entire movie as well.
However, Anupam who has been flooded with compliments for his “perfect mimicking” of former PM Singh’s style of walking and his soft-spoken voice, takes up a defensive stance.
Justifies Kher, “Our film is based on facts as chronicled in a book by Sanjaya Baru— Manmohan Singh’s media advisor between 2004 and 2008. If we make a film on any historic personality or incident, we can’t change the history or the facts. That’s what we have done here. The book is written by a man Sanjaya (noted actor Akshaye Khanna plays his screen-avataar) who was very close to the PM at that time. This book was either ignored or people moved on after its release. So why this hue and cry now,” counters Kher who initially refused to accept the offer to play the former PM.
“It was Singh-saab’s peculiar style of walking that initially daunted me and I took that up as a challenge but only after six months of practice I perfected both the walk and talk,” confesses Anupam.
Interestingly, stunning German-born actress-multi-linguist Suzanne Bernert (she has acted in Hindi movies and TV shows) plays Sonia Gandhi while popular actress Aahna Kumra is cast as Priyanka Gandhi.