National Award winner Srijit Mukherji’s Bollywood debut feature Begum Jaan will bring a renewed focus on the sex workers community, he said. A Hindi adaptation of Mukerji’s critically-acclaimed Bengali outing Rajkahini, Begum Jaan sees Vidya Balan play a brothel owner in a story of survival set against the backdrop of the Partition.

It will absolutely bring in a renewed focus. It’s a story of survival. They are human beings who have their code of conduct, they have families, they have relationships… it’s very unfair to discriminate against them or put them aside as marginal sections, Mukerji told IANS here.

Mukerji also refuted reports that said Vidya interacted with sex workers in Kolkata’s Sonagachi red light area to prepare for her role. It has been wrongly reported. In 2011, I had made a film called ‘Baishe Shrabon’ during which I had shot portions of the film in Sonagachi. That is when I got exposed to the lives of these people and I got to talk to few of them so when I was making Begum Jaan, I incorporated the knowledge there, he explained.

As for now, Mukerji has five Hindi films and two Bengali films in the pipeline. Out of the five, a couple of them are remakes of my Bengali films Hemlock Society and Chotushkone. I am waiting for the actors to come back, Mukerji added, declining to comment further on the future projects.

Vidya Balan has played many challenging roles on screen,  but this is for the first time that the actress will be seen in the role of a fierce and gutsy brothel caretaker. Apart from Vidya, the film also stars Gauhar Khan, Naseeruddin Shah and Ashish Vidyarthi in pivotal roles and we are really excited to see Vidya in a completely new character on screen.The film is slated to hit the

The film is slated to hit the theatres on April 14 this year.

Vidya Balan

Courtesy: Twitter photo

Courtesy: Twitter photo