By Subhash K Jha
MUMBAI: Would Sohail Khan finally crack the formula to make a film on the life of Fearless Nadia?
The mythical screen queen of stunt films in the 1930s and her adventurous life as an action star was to be filmed by Vishal Bhardwaj who had even zeroed in on German actress Franka Potente to play the role.
But then the legendary Fearless Nadia’s family put its collective feet down. Nothing was heard of the project thereafter.
Now Sohail Khan has been offered a chance to make a film on the queen of stunts.
Sohail says he would tackle the bio-pic only if and when his producers get Nadia’s family’s approval. “I’ll take up this project only if all the necessary permission and approvals are obtained. There is no point in doing a film on a real-life figure unless the family is with you.”
Shedding light on the project Sohail says, “A producer friend of mine from Australia approached me with this project a couple of months ago. She’s still doing the basic research. And for now I’m totally tied up with my underproduction film. So let’s see.”
While it’s too early to talk about the casting, we can reveal that the Fearless Nadia won’t be essayed by a non-Indian actress.
(Fearless Nadia was an Australian blonde ballet dancer named Mary Ann Evans who was introduced to the Indian film industry by JBH Wadia in the 1930s and she went on to perform stunts in over 50 films. She became famous after her role as a masked adventuress in the 1935 film Hunterwali. She was the first female to act in Indian films. Fearless: The Hunterwali Story was a documentary on her life done by her grandnephew Riyad Vinci Wadia in 1994).