Critically-acclaimed actor Anupam Kher, who has essayed the role of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in controversial film ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’, has defended the movie, calling it a historic step in the Indian film industry. Speaking to Zee News Editor-in-Chief Sudhir Chaudhary, Kher said that everyone knew that Manmohan Singh had been weak at times as the Prime Minister, adding that there was no need of a film to tell people about the same.
The actor, however, defended Manmohan Singh as a person, saying he was “very humane” but not a “well versed politician”. According to the actor, who made his debut on the silver screen with ‘Aagmaan’ in 1982, Manmohan Singh was “weak somewhere to let other people dictate”.
Kher claimed that the former prime minister would be happy with the portrayal of his character in the film ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’, which is based on a book with the same name authored by Singh’s former advisor Sanjaya Baru.
“I have a strong feeling that Manmohan Singh will hug me and ask me for tea if he does not bother about people around,” said Kher. When asked about the possible reaction of Congress party chief Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi to the film, the actor said, “They will not invite me for tea.”
Responding to a question on the political controversy and the sharing of trailer by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on microblogging site Twitter, Kher said that it is not for the first time that a political party is using a film to drive across its point.
“People don't decide who to vote for on the basis of a film. Political parties always use some or the other thing to their advantage. Even leaders of the Congress party used films like Udta Punjab (based on the drug menace in Punjab) to drive across their point,” said the actor.
He further said that people would have a different perspective about former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh after they watch ‘The Accidental Prime Minister’. “It was a lifetime opportunity for me to play a role as brilliant as that of Manmohan Singh. This will be a historic film. We have shown real-life characters with their real names. It is important and it is a historical step,” Kher added.
According to the actor, it was tough for him to essay the role of Manmohan Singh, adding that he became a fan of the former Prime Minister after doing the film. “I will be proud of the portrayal of this character. It is a big achievement for me as an actor,” said Kher.
Kher also used the opportunity to hit out at his critics, saying, “Those criticising my acting and calling it a mimic are fools. I have no time to respond to them.”