‘I have worshipped Shabana Azmi’
Actor Vidya Balan says she can’t fulfil Azmi’s wish of joining theatre, as she is scared of a live audience
It’s not just for the sake of answering a question from the media that actor Vidya Balan (right) says she considers actor Shabana Azmi in high regard.
Sometime back, HT City asked Azmi, who would she like to see, from the current brigade of female actors, taking to the stage and the veteran wished that Vidya takes that legacy forward.
Recently, when Vidya Balan was in Delhi, to check out designer Gaurang Shah’s latest collection, we asked her if she would fulfill Azmi’s wish and the actor said, “I don’t read news so Siddharth (Roy Kapur) told me that Shabana Azmi said this and I was like ‘Oh my God, what a huge compliment!’ I’ve always worshipped her. Having said that, I’ll die in fright in front of a live audience. So I don’t think I’m ready for that (theatre) yet.”
She, however, holds Azmi in high esteem and says that the biggest compliment was when she was compared with the actor, soon after the launch of the trailer of her next film.
“I’m a huge Shabana Azmi fan and people told me that when they saw the trailer of my film, my character reminded them of Mandi (1983). That’s a huge compliment. For my role, I don’t think I was inspired by anyone but the script,” says the National award-winning actor.
Vidya Balan’s character of a brothel head has been drawing comparisons with leading female actors, who have played prostitutes on screen, in the past.
Balan however says, “It’s a different character. There might be some comparison with Rituparna Sengupta, who played the same role in the Bengali version of this film, and I would still think that’s fair, but you know, I don’t get bothered by comparison.”