Twinkle Khanna is soon to turn producer with her upcoming venture ‘Pad Man’ which will see Akshay Kumar play the lead role. Akshay will portray the role of Arunachalam Muruganantham, a man who came into the limelight during 1998 after he invented machines that could manufacture sanitary napkins at a much cheaper rate than that available in the market. This invention of Muruganantham greatly helped women in the rural areas as the machines were installed in 23 states across India. The Government of India honoured him with the Padma Shri for his contribution, and he even featured on the TIME magazine’s list of 100 Most Influential People in the World in 2014.
However, it wasn’t easy for Mrs Funnybones to acquire the rights for the film as Muruganantham wanted a Hollywood film to be made on his story. The couple had to take a lot of pain to track him down and convince him to give them the rights. Talking about the process Muruganantham said:
"This is not one of those movies that happened in a day or week. It has taken 1.5 years for us to give it a shape. A girl called Twinkle (Khanna) had been chasing me endlessly for rights. She tracked my every move. She desperately tried to reach me when I was in Malaysia and New York. She finally caught me in London. My friends were curious why would Twinkle want to meet me. It was only then I learnt she is Rajesh Khanna's daughter. I remember telling her, 'Akshay Kumar has also been trying to get me for the rights.' She'd laughed and said, 'Yes, he is my husband.”
Recalling the first time he met Akshay, Muruganantham added, “He is extremely humble and down to earth. The day I met him I was going for a lecture to a woman's college. He was hell-bent on coming with me because he wanted to see me give a speech. Twinkle had to stop him because the project was in the early stages then and they didn't want the media to get a whiff of it.”
Talking about giving away the rights for the movie to Twinkle and Akshay, he opined, “I rarely watch Hindi films, but after meeting Akshay I watched Airlift and Baby. I didn't want to give the rights to anyone in India. But, I didn't have the heart to turn down Akshay and Twinkle. They were so passionate about the story that I had to give it to them."
Signing off on a happy note, Muruganantham further added that he is proud that for the first time in the history of world cinema a mainstream male superstar will talk about menstruation sanitary napkins in a full-length feature film. And just like him, we too feel that Akshay has taken a good initiative towards bringing a positive change in the society.