Aishwarya Rai was first choice for 'Parineeta'

Added by harini on Apr 03, 2012

Vidya Balan made her debut in 2005 with the movie ‘Parineeta’, which instantly earned her critical acclaim and a box-office hit. But the producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra recently revealed that Vidya Balan wasn’t the first choice for the role.

The producer was very keen on casting Aishwarya Rai as Lalita as he wasn’t sure of then new comer Vidya Balan’s acting abilities.

“When we thought of `Parineeta`, I immediately thought of a face like Aishwarya Rai. The character of the girl is like two men fall in love with her...so the heroine has to be bigger. But Pradeep Sarkar (director) told me about her (Vidya) I was like let me see what she can do,” he said to a daily.

“But then we tested and tried her (Vidya) and she cleared,” he added.

‘Parineeta’ was an adaptation of 1914 Bengali novella of the same name by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. The movie starred Vidya Balan, Saif Ali Khan and Sanjay Dutt in lead roles.

Talking about the other two stars in the movie, Vidhu Vinod Chopra said, “I had called up Sanjay saying there is a role for you in my film and he agreed. We wanted the character of Girish (Sanjay) to be bigger than Shekar (Saif Ali Khan).”

The film was also noted for a fine performance by veteran actor Rekha.

“For this cameo we went to who’s-who of Bollywood but then we realized it has to be someone who is a classic diva and who better than her (Rekha). I had gone to meet her (Rekha) after Chopra had spoken to her about the appearance. It was fantastic meeting her...she does her own styling, hair, make-up, photography. Even for the song she had valuable inputs to provide. It was amazing and we had a wonderful time working with her,” director Pradeep Sarkar said.

To mark Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s completion of 30 years in Bollywood, PVR Cinemas, in association with Chopra, has organized a first of its kind retrospective in which his films over the years are paid tribute to.

On the second day of the fest the movie 'Parineeta' was screened. The film’s cast and crew including Vidya, Raima Sen, Pradeep Sarkar, producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra, director Pradeep Sarkar, cinematographer Natarajan Subramaniam and music director Shantanu Moitra among others.

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