Well, actually screen legend Amitabh Bachchan is 66 years old but in his film Pa, Amitabh plays a twelve year old with a condition called Progeria. Progeria, according to the Progeria Research Foundation is a “rare, fatal genetic condition characterized by an appearance of accelerated aging in children.”
At the helm of this intriguing project is R Balkrishnan aka Balki, who directed Big B in Cheeni Kum. In an earlier interview Balki said, “Pa would be a far more emotional story than Cheeni Kum. Big B plays a character he has never played before. It’s a very emotional father-son story. But the emotions won’t be melodramatic.” If the story was not intriguing enough – if Big B is playing the son, who is playing the father? It is Abhishek Bachchan, who is playing daddy to his daddy, and Vidya Balan is cast as his mom.
Another interesting twist to this incredibly fascinating project is that in the credits Amitabh will be introduced as if it was his first film. Balki told Subhash K Jha, “The credits will read ‘Starring Abhishek Bachchan … Vidya Balan … Introducing Amitabh Bachchan.’ I truly believe this is Mr Bachchan’s first film, because he has never played a 12-year-old. His character is named Auro … No, it’s not 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 recognise him at all in the film.”
It seems that in order to get into character for Auro, it not only took 6 hours of make up, it also saw Mr. Bachchan taking on the persona of a child – so much so that at some points he had to be disciplined, “Mr Bachchan behaved like a 10-year-old on the sets. He just allowed the child within him to surface to become Auro. He threw so many tantrums just like an uncontrollable child that we had to literally discipline him at times. On the sets, he would also stomp his feet like a brat and just go on whining, ‘I want … I want … I want!’ until he got what he wanted. We were frightened by the level he had imbibed his character.”
The director added, “No matter how prepared you are as a filmmaker to work with this all-pervasive idol of an actor, you are still taken aback by what he does to his character.”
Those are only a few little tidbits that have been let out of the remarkably closed set of Pa. If we hear anymore we will be sure to report it so keep your eye on this space for more!