Mohammad Azharuddinn may be known for his exemplary cricketing skills, but it was a big challenge for actor Emraan Hashmi to depict the former Indian cricketer’s personal life in the upcoming biopic “Azhar”.
Directed by Tony D’Souza, the movie is based on the life Azharuddin, who was implicated in a cricket match-fixing scandal in 2000, and banned by BCCI for life. In 2012, however, the Andhra Pradesh High Court lifted the ban, describing it as “unsustainable”.
Emraan said meeting Azharuddin up close and personal gave him “new dimensions” about Azhar’s life, including the tragic death of the cricketer’s son.
“There have been new dimensions that I came across once I started talking and understanding his personal experiences. Not just about his cricketing career, ups and downs, but things like losing his son,” Emraan told PTI.
“He was fighting a court case for 12 years and just when he was about to win it, he lost his son. Portraying his personal journey as accurately as I could was challenging,” the actor said.
The “Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai” star underwent a rigorous three-hour training session every morning to get the body language of a cricketer right.
Emraan, 37, trained with Azharuddin for nearly three months, playing as many as 150 balls everyday which, according to him, was “almost like a match”.
“I am not much of a cricketer, so portraying that on screen was a huge task. I trained with Azhar bhai for three months. We used to train three hours every morning, I used to
have 150 balls chucked at me, that is almost like a match. It was just to get the form right,” he said.