Deepika Padukone to play acid attack survivor Laxmi Agarwal in Meghna Gulzar film

Deepika Padukone has finally locked on her next big Bollywood project. Several reports made the rounds about Deepika’s next film with the latest being Meghna Gulzar’s directorial after Raazi. Now, Mumbai Mirror has finally confirmed the news that the ‘Padmaavat’ star has now taken up the role of acid attack survivor Laxmi Agarwal in Meghna Gulzar’s next film.

Not only this, the ‘Piku’ actress has also decided to turn producer with the film. “When I heard this story, I was deeply moved as it’s not just one of violence but of strength and courage, hope and victory. It made such an impact on me, that personally and creatively, I needed to go beyond and so the decision to turn producer,” Deepika told Mumbai Mirror.

This will be Deepika’s first project post blockbuster success of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmaavat, which released in January amid huge controversy. On the other hand, Meghna’s last project, Raazi, also proved to be a big success.

Laxmi was attacked by a man in 2005 after she rejected his marriage proposal. She was one of the winners of the US State Department’s International Women of Courage Award in 2014. Laxmi also established an NGO Chhanv Foundation for acid attack survivors and also opened a cafe which is managed by them.

Meghna Gulzar feels Laxmi’s story needs to be told to bring awareness in the society. “Using Laxmi’s story as a lens, we are attempting to explore these aspects and the consequences of acid-related violence in our society. This’s what makes this must-told story relevant. Awareness is the first step towards change,” she told Mirror.

About casting Deepika to play Laxmi in the film, the director stated, “I was instinctively convinced that Deepika would do justice to the character and the story. Also, her physicality matched with what I’d imagined for Laxmi’s character. I’m grateful and encouraged that she was so spontaneous in her decision to do the film.”

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