No Attempt to Whitewash Him: Abhishek on Playing 'Big Bull'
'The Big Bull' is based on the premise of the 1992 Indian securities scam
Abhishek Bachchan's upcoming film The Big Bull follows the story of stockbroker Harshad Mehta known for the market manipulation that led to the 1992 Indian stock market scam. Portraying such a character in all his essence leads to a question of moral responsibility and Abhishek believes this responsibility lies with the director and actors. Speaking to MidDay, he said, "Hemant Shah, my character is a flawed one. I don’t know if I agree entirely with the fact that the moral responsibility of the subject is on the writers. They are storytellers and they shouldn’t bother with morality. When we - producers, actors and the director steps in, that’s when the moral responsibility steps in."
He believes that the 'Big Bull' character would be rendered 'unidimensional' if he was shown to be heroic. "He has human frailties and I like the fact that he slips. He is so taken in by the world he has helped create. We have come of age as an audience. We want our heroes to be real and flawed. Hemant is from a chawl and then owns an apartment with a swimming pool in the balcony... Moral responsibility comes in when you are making a film for a larger audience and the team has made no attempt to whitewash him," he added.
After the release of The Big Bull's trailer, people started making comparisons to Hansal Mehta's Scam 1992 starring Pratik Gandhi which is based on the same premise. Abhishek and Pratik both essay similar roles in their respective projects. Talking about the comparisons, Abhishek said that 'film and web series are different disciplines to write for' and added, "In cinema, you have to crack it up and make the story pacey. The two shouldn’t be comparable. The Big Bull is a movie that has scale that’s undergone a different process. Comparisons are inevitable and I am proud of what we’ve made."
Scam 1992 director Hansal Mehta had also addressed the social media comparisons in a tweet on 19 March which said, "Please don’t make unfair comparisons. There can be multiple tales on the same story. Every story-teller will have his own way and should be seen independent of the other."
Kookie Gulati's directorial The Big Bull also stars Nikita Dutta, Ileana D'Cruz, Sohum Shah, Ram Kapoor and Saurabh Shukla. Ajay Devgn, who joined the film as a producer, recommended Abhishek for the role. The movie will get a direct-to-OTT release due to the COVID pandemic. It is scheduled to release on Disney+ Hotstar on 8 April 2021.
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