Paa Is Introducing Amitabh Bachchan!

September 28th, 2009 - 11:39 am ICT by Sampurn Wire  

Paa Is Introducing Amitabh Bachchan! By Subhash K Jha

Yes, that’s how the credit titles of Balki’s Paa will bill the super-icon.

Says the director Balki, “The credits will read “Starring Abhishek Bachchan…Vidya Balan…Introducing Amitabh Bachchan.’ I truly believe this is Mr. Bachchan’s first film, firstly because he has never played a 12-year old. His character is named Auro…No it’s short for Aurobindo. He’s just…Auro! And if there are any members of the audience who haven’t seen him before they won’t recognize him.”

On the sets of Paa, Big B’s transformation into a 12-year old was so complete he behaved like a 12-year old child even when the camera was not on.

“Why 12-year old? Mr. Bachchan behaved like a 10-year old on the sets. He just allowed the child within him to surface and the Big B became Auro, throwing so many tantrums we had to literally discipline him at times.”

So startling and complete was Big B’s physical and emotional transformation that even members of the unit were taken in.

Recalls Balki, “Mr. Bachchan had become an uncontrollable child during the shooting. On the sets he would stomp his feet like a brat and just go on and on whining, ” I want…I want…I want!’ until he got what he wanted. We were frightened by the level to which he took the character into within himself.”

The character is almost toothless.

“Auro has just 4-5 teeth in his mouth. Mr. Bachchan’s gummed grin has to be seen to be believed,” says the disbelieving director. “No matter how prepared you are as filmmaker to work with this all-pervasive idol of an actor you are still aback by what he does to his character.”

Auro in Paa is a chocolate addict. Mr Bachchan’s health doesn’t permit him too much sweet stuff. “And still when the camera was on he was constantly nibbling and chewing on chocolates. We had to often pull those bars of chocolate away from his hands. You see, chocolates are good for the metabolism level of those who suffer from Progeria. So Auro had to be shown constantly eating chocolates.”

A big charity premiere of Paa for the Progeria Research Foundation is being planned. But beyond that, Balki and the Paa producers AB Corp Ltd don’t intend to make an issue of this rare genetical disease in the marketing.

Says Balki, “Progeria won’t be a star-attraction in the publicity campaign. Yes Mr. Bachchan’s character suffers from the rare disease. But the film is not about the disease. The Progeria Research Foundation is very particular about the way the disease is projected to the public.”

So should Big B get ready to receive all the debutant awards next year?

Laughs Balki, “I sure hope the awards would honor him in the child’s category or the debutants’ category.”

-Sampurn Media

Paa Is Introducing Amitabh Bachchan!

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