Vidya Balan will play celebrated Indian mathematician Shakuntala Devi in an upcoming biopic directed by Anu Menon. “Excited to play the role of Math Genius #ShakuntalaDevi,” Balan tweeted on Wednesday, describing her as a “small-town Indian girl who took the world by storm”.
The untitled biopic will go into production later this year and is aiming for a 2020 release. The film will be produced by Abundantia Entertainment.
Devi, who was nicknamed “the human computer”, was known for her swift mental calculations. She was born in Bengaluru in 1929 and her father, a circus artist, discovered her mathematical abilities while teaching her a card game when she was three.
The mathematician was featured in the 1982 edition of The Guinness Book of World Records for correctly multiplying two 13-digit numbers in 28 seconds at the Imperial College in London in 1980. She authored several books on mathematics, as well as the 1977 title The World of Homosexuals, which featured interviews with gay men in India. Devi died in Bengaluru on April 21, 2013.
Menon’s credits include Waiting (2015) and Amazon Prime Video’s female buddy comedy series Four More Shots Please! (2019). Balan will next be seen in Akshay Kumar’s Mission Mangal and Ajith Kumar’s Nerkonda Paarvai.