Normally actors who work with Mira Nair intentionally or unintentionally end up not working with Deepa Mehta, and vice versa.
It therefore comes as a surprise to know Irrfan Khan a diehard Mira Nair groupie would be working with Deepa Mehta in Midnight's Children.
Deepa met Irrfan Khan earlier this month and offered him a major role. Ironically this incident happened just at about the same time that Mira's offer to Irrfan to play the lead in her prestigious international project The Reluctant Fundmentalist fell through.
Apparently Mira had discussed the role of the progressive Pakistan protagonist with Irrfan and had even offered him the script.
Irrfan doesn't deny the fact that Mira had offered him the talked-about film. “While shooting with me she did bring it up. But that's it. After that there has been no word from her on it. I hold no grudges about it. What Mira has given me in The Namesake and Kosher Vegetarian is incredible. I enjoyed myself thoroughly doing these two films and I'm sure we'll work together some other time.”
No matter what Irrfan says, facts tell another story. Not a single notable actor is common to the cinema of Deepa Mehta and Mira Nair.
As for the Deepa Mehta project Irrfan has greenlighted it.Deepa Mehta's Midnight's Children and Mira Nair's The Reluctant Fundamentalist, both based on literary works, will commence shooting at around the same time.
“Deepa has given me the script and I'll read it as soon as my first schedule for Sudhir Mishra's Homecoming is over, ” says Irrfan. On Tuesday morning he was hanging from a harness from the 18th floor of a building in Delhi in the shivering winter with nothing on except track pants and a vest.
Explaining his precarious mid-air plight Irrfan sais, “It's the introduction scene in Sudhir's film. And here I'm half-naked waiting to be pulled up with strings to the 18th floor. Fortunately I've the physique for it. I developed the build and stamina to try a stunt like this while I was playing the athlete Paan Singh Tomar in my last film.”
As for the casting of The Reluctant Fundamentalist its director says, “It's early days yet.I don't have an idea yet. I start casting in Pakistan first and them make my way to India.”