A new wave of patriotism seems to have taken over the themes of films in India these days. John Abraham-starrer film Parmanu: The Story of Pokhran, released in May 2018, clearly falls in the very category. Based on the real incident that led to India’s inclusion in the Big 5 States, the movie is a dramatic revisit to our country’s glorious past. However, the team of scientists and engineers depicted in the movie resembled Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam and Rajagopala Chidambaram who carried out the historic Operation Shakti under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led government; John’s character was a fictional one.
Asked about what training and preparation it took for him to perfect the role of Ashwat Raina, the handsome hunk told a leading tabloid, “I had to go through a lot of research. The character’s name is Ashwat Raina and he’s a junior bureaucrat in the Prime Minister’s Office. So, for that Abhishek said, ‘Even a blind man knows when John Abraham walks. Your physicality is very over-powering. So, you need to deconstruct yourself. You need to stop going to something called a ‘gym’ and eat regular food like a normal human being and live normally‘, which for me, was a big task in itself.”
“Then, we went into the backstory of the character. ‘What did Ashwat’s parents and grandparents do’, not that we have used it in the film but Abhishek is a NSD (National School of Drama) graduate. So, he thinks differently. He put me through the entire process, and when I kept going through it, and when I saw the film, I realised it was very useful. The extent of workshops that I have gone through for Parmanu has been intense but it’s all being worth it.”
When asked if he had any inhibitions before signing the film, Abraham said, “No… because I did films like Madras Cafe in the past and before that I did lot of films in which I took lot of risk like Water, No Smoking and Kabul Express.
John, star of films like No Smoking, Desi Boyz, Welcome Back recently made his debut as a Marathi movie producer with Savita Damodar Paranjpe. It is a famous Marathi play, adapted into Hindi and Gujarati, that John made into a film.
Keep watching this space for interesting tidbits about the movie. Parmanu: The Story of Pokhran is now available on ZEE5.