Mangesh Desai unfazed with Vidya Balan getting attention for 'Ekk Albela'

Popular Marathi actor Mangesh Desai says he has no qualms about the spotlight being on his co-star Vidya Balan in their upcoming film 'Ekk Albela'.

Mangesh Desai
Mangesh Desai

In 1951, Hindi cinema saw a huge hit in the form of 'Albela' and a star - Bhagwan Abhaji Palav aka Bhagwan Dada - was born.

Now, 64 years after 'Albela' and 14 years after Bhagwan Dada's demise, a biopic on him is ready for release.

The Marathi film, titled "Ekk Albela", features actor Mangesh Desai as Bhagwan Dada and also marks the Marathi screen debut of Vidya Balan, who will be seen as yesteryear's actress Geeta Bali in the film.

"I am not worried about the focus being on Vidya. If there would have been some other actress from Marathi film industry then the film would have been of the same level. The film needed a star like Vidya," Mangesh told PTI.

"She (Vidya) is the USP of the film and the producers would have felt it correct to have her in the film and be part of promotions. I am happy and ok that Vidya's name is used first for this film," he said.

Initially Mangesh was scared to shoot with the "Paa" actress. "I was frightened as she (Vidya) is the superstar of Hindi cinema. I thought she will overpower me and whether we will have a tuning or not. When I started working with her I felt she is down to earth and very warm and sweet person."

Mangesh revealed he was mesmerised by Vidya's patience and her want to be perfect in everything she does on screen.

Towards the end of the shoot, the "Kahaani" actress gifted an idol of Bal Krishna to Mangesh.

"While giving the gift, she (Vidya) said rise like the sun. She liked my work, it feels great when someone like her praises you," he said.

For the actor, portraying the role of Bhagwan Dada was challenging.

"There is not much information on Bhagwan Dada, so it was challenging as I had to make sure it doesn't look caricaturish or like doing his mimicry," Mangesh said.

"Dancing was the most challenging thing for me. I was confused about my acting, but dance was a big challenge," he said.

The biopic is all set to hit the screens on June 24.

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