Bollywood’s poster boy Imran Khan has certainly toughened up his image lately and is almost unrecognisable as the rugged hero figure in director Vishal Bhardwaj’s forthcoming rustic North Indian film Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola, which is released through Twentieth Century Fox on 11th January 2013.
Acclaimed director Vishal Bhardwaj (Omkara, Maqbool) requested Imran to completely get into the skin of his character ‘Matru’ by immersing himself in the Haryana way of life. The actor spent a month, dedicating five hours every day with five ‘Jhat’ (a North Indian caste) boys from Delhi to imbibe their language and mannerisms.
The rigorous training schedule meant that Imran had to change his body language and also learn the language of Haryanvi for the role. So intense was his training that he had to eat with the Jhat boys, go shopping with them, and possibly the most daunting, he had to only speak and respond in Haryanvi, not uttering a word of English for a whole month. Imran was mentored for the part by theatre maestro NK Sharma, who runs the Delhi-based act 1theatre Group.
After the month-long, intensive training session was completed, and both Vishal Bhardwaj and NK Sharma were convinced that Imran could pass for a true native Haryanvi, did the young actor begin shooting for the film.
Set in the rustic surroundings of a village in Haryana in India, Matru ki Bijlee ka Mandola is a comedy-drama about Harry Mandola (PANKAJ KAPUR), a wealthy industrialist who loves his drink, his daughter Bijlee (ANUSHKA SHARMA) and the unusual bond they both share with Harry’s man-Friday, Matru (IMRAN KHAN).
Much to her father’s delight, Bijlee is all set to marry Baadal (ARYA BABBAR), the son of a powerful politician Chaudhari Devi (SHABANA AZMI). This alliance which is far from just being a simple union of two young people becomes the seed for a story that brings twists and turns in the lives of Matru, Bijlee and Mandola
Matru ki Bijlee ka Mandola releases on 11th January 2013 by Twentieth Century Fox.