Weightlifter Karnam Malleshwari became India’s first-ever female Olympic medallist. She won a bronze at the Sydney Olympics 2000. While a lot of sports movies are being made, Malleswari is now set to get a biopic on her life and career, which was announced her birthday, on June 1. Sanjana Reddy would be directing the multilingual movie based on the weightlifter.
Malleshwari had lifted 110 kg in the snatch and 130 kg in the clean and jerk categories for a total of 240 kg to win her medal at Sydney. She is also the only Indian woman weightlifter to win an Olympic medal.
Earlier, India has seen similar biopics on Mary Kom and Bhaag Miklha Bhaag.
The makers of this film feel it will have a good outreach. Writer of the biopic, Kona Venkat said “A poor girl from a remote village in Srikakulam district won the bronze medal for India in the Olympics. That is definitely a big story to narrate.”
“My only request was that Karnam Malleswari should be seen for what she is. My struggles, my training, all the coaches I went through – it must be there for all to see,” she told Indian Express in a interview. Malleswari also throws a square challenge to any actor wanting to play her: “In a boxing movie, you can show a dummy fight, but in weightlifting you would at least need to lift 20 kilos.
The movie needs to find a heroine who can lift so that people can see the nerves, the pressure of the body, the muscles. Any actress who comes in will have to be taught techniques, will need to train. Making a boxing movie isn’t as hard as a weightlifting movie,” she quips. It will be interesting to watch which actress from Bollywood takes the challenge to play the journey of a girl (Karnam Malleshwari) who lifted the nation at Sydney Olympics.