Minnisha hasn’t got her due in Bollywood: Shyam Benegal

September 09, 2009

Shyam Benegal 247x300New Delhi, Acclaimed filmmaker Shyam Bengal describes Minnisha Lamba as an “exceptionally good” actress but rues that she hasn’t got her “due” in Bollywood. He feels his movie “Well Done Abba” will no doubt fetch her the much-deserved appreciation.

“Minnisha will be seen in something very different from what she has done till now. I hope with ‘Well Done Abba’ she gets the appreciation she deserves. She is an exceptionally fine actress and I feel that she has not got her due in the industry,” Benegal told IANS over the phone from Mumbai.

After starting her film career with critically acclaimed film “Yahaan”, Minnisha moved on to mainstream cinema and featured in films like “Anthony Kaun Hai?”, “Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd”, “Kidnap” and “Bachna Ae Haseeno”.

“Well Done Abba”, a political satire, is a light hearted film that narrates the story of Armaan Ali, a driver working in Mumbai. He takes leave for a month to find a husband for his teenage daughter, who lives in a small neighbourhood close to Hyderabad and returns to work only after three months. His young employer wants to sack him but is persuaded to listen to the reason why he got so delayed.

The film that was earlier christened “Abba Ka Kuan” stars Boman Irani as the lead character along with Ila Arun, Sonali Kulkarni, Rajit Kapur and Yashpal Sharma in pivotal roles.

Asked why he changed the title, Benegal said: “We had decided on ‘Abba Ka Kuan’, but then we thought that ‘Well Done Abba’ would be more contemporary. This one is an active title, it is not static like the earlier one. With this one you get a feeling that something is happening.”

Produced by Big Pictures, the film is inspired by two short stories – “Narsaiyyan Ki Bavdi” by Jeelani Bano and “Phulwa Ka Pul” by Sanjeev. Another script by Jayant Kriplani was also merged to make it complete.

“Well Done Abba” was screened at the Montreal Film Festival Saturday and will be screened at the London Film Festival in the coming months.

“At the moment, we don’t know when we will release the film in India. It has been screened at Montreal and will go to London and a few other festivals before releasing in India,” the 74-year-old filmmaker said.

Throwing light on what benefits a film receives by screening in festivals, Benegal said the film gets the critic’s point of view and exposure required for sale in other countries, which is quite useful.

The director of critically acclaimed films like “Ankur”, “Nishant”, “Junoon” and “Zubeidaa” said he has a couple of ideas in mind for future projects but doesn’t know which one will take precedence.



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