I don’t read my reviews at all: Vidya Balan


The trailer of the Vidya Balan-starrer Begum Jaan has received an outstanding response, increasing cinemagoers expectations from the Srijit Mukherji film. Speaking about it, Vidya too, shared that the film has done much better than what she thought it would, reported Times of India.

“I didn’t think about it. The trailer was another event I had to attend that day, and then I had a TV shoot scheduled for the day. I was taken by surprise. I wasn’t even thinking about it when Srijit called and informed me that it had crossed 7 million views, and now it has crossed 20 million. I think it’s done better than what I expected,” says the Kahaani star.

When asked about how she prepared for her intense hard-hitting character in the film, Vidya gives most of the credit to Srijit and the rest of the team. “I think it’s the script that prepares me. It had it all. Srijit’s writing and Kausar Munir’s dialogues really did half the job. You try the costumes, the makeup and hairstyle, making the look of the character. I think all of this contributes a little bit.  I spent a lot of time with Srijit trying to understand Begum Jaan. Where she came from. I think through all my chats that preparation happened,” Vidya admits.

She confesses that her confidence in her work is based on her intuition. “It’s always the instinct first, and then you know what to do. When you work unquestionably, the audience will accept it. Even with my films which haven’t done well, by god’s grace, I have been appreciated. Maybe because of how I’ve done my work. I have never judged myself and enjoy. I think I am committed to what I do, thriving on it. So maybe that’s why that happens,” she states.

Whenever there is a ‘Vidya Balan’ film up for release there is a certain amount of trust involved before the audience buys a ticket. However, the Parineeta actor states she doesn’t feel pressurised by this. “I feel very grateful that people have those expectations from me even though few of my past films haven’t done well. However, it’s not been a pressure at all. I never ever think if this is the right film to do. I always think whether I want to do the role and whether an audience would want to watch it. If this criterion is fulfilled then I go ahead and give my best and nothing else.”

Many of her contemporaries would think twice before signing the kind of projects Vidya likes doing.  With Begum Jaan too, the journey wasn’t too easy for her. “I remember that we were two or three weeks away from the shoot. Srijit was at my house discussing the costumes and Rick Roy (costume designer) had also come over. Srijit received a call, he went into the corner and then his face looked like he had just seen a ghost. I went up to him and he said the set was completely destroyed by a storm. I will never forget his expression,” recalls Vidya.

On another note, Vidya acknowledges Bollywood can sometimes be unforgiving about failures. “When a film doesn’t work it breaks your heart. It’s a reality you have to face. I talk about it with Siddharth Malhotra and my family. Sometimes, I cry, weep and crib but eventually, I move on,” she says. However, she never reads movie reviews of her films. “I don’t read reviews at all. I don’t even read the stories which are published about me. If there is any review or story that is really well-written, my dad or my friend circle tells me about it. And then, if later I get some time off the work, then I might read them.”