Vidya Balan on Indira Gandhi biopic: Too much material to be made into a film
With Ronnie Screwvala coming aboard as producer, Vidya Balan confirms Indira Gandhi biopic will be a web series
Sonil Dedhia (MID-DAY; August 11, 2018)

When Vidya Balan announced earlier this year that she will play former prime minister Indira Gandhi in a biopic, fans and critics unanimously agreed she was the perfect choice to portray the Iron Lady of India. The debate, however, was whether Sagarika Ghose's book, Indira: India's Most Powerful Prime Minister - the source material - would be adapted into a film or a web series. In a chat with mid-day, the actor revealed that given the vast scope of the material, the makers have decided to make it into a digital show.

"There is too much material for it be made into a film. So, we decided to turn it into a web series. We don't know how many seasons we will be allotting to it. We are in the process of putting together a team," says Balan, glad that her long-cherished dream of essaying one of the most powerful figures in Indian history is being realised.

Balan reveals that the ambitious project will be bankrolled by good friend Ronnie Screwvala. Given that their muse is as charismatic as she is controversial, the team is ensuring that the script does justice to Gandhi. "We have to do a lot more research. Developing the script will take long, as there is so much information on her. We can't put a timeline as to when the project will go on floors."

Ask her whether they will approach the Gandhi family for permission and she says, "We don't require permission, as it's based on a book and we have the rights to it." Balan, who was recently appointed the brand ambassador of the Malta India Film Festival, says such platforms are essential for cinema. "It is encouraging to see our industry grow."