India's Saina Nehwal warms up at the 2012 Olympics in London, England. (AP)

India's Saina Nehwal warms up at the 2012 Olympics in London, England. (AP)

Saina is a celebrity, traveling and making appearances at events and on television. (AP)

Saina is a celebrity, traveling and making appearances at events and on television. (AP)

The celebrity is also a fierce competitor, giving her game full concentration. (AP)

The celebrity is also a fierce competitor, giving her game full concentration. (AP)

Saina returns a shot at this April’s Malaysia Open Badminton Superseries. (AP)

Saina returns a shot at this April’s Malaysia Open Badminton Superseries. (AP)

Saina on the Big Screen

Posted: May 2, 2016

“WHACK!” Saina does it again! She whacks the birdie into the air over and over. It never touches the ground. She defeats her opponent. Soon, she will be whacking her way to the summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Soon after that, the story of her life will be told in a new movie.

In India, people enjoy watching inspiring biopics about their fellow Indians. Biopics are biographies on film. If you were a filmmaker living in India, you might think, “Who can I make a movie about?” It probably wouldn’t take you long to think of Saina Nehwal. She is the perfect candidate for a biopic! People look up to her. They want to know all about her.

Four years ago, Saina Nehwal went to the London Olympics. She won a bronze medal. No Indian had ever won an Olympic medal for badminton. In fact, India has not produced many world-beaters in most sports. At the time she won, Saina was only 22 years old. The movie will tell the story of how Saina got to that point. What made her so great? What was it like when she won?

Usually biopics show people overcoming hard times. Every story needs a twist, right? But Saina’s story doesn’t seem to have many struggles in it. She started playing badminton as a kid. She worked very hard. Then she had great success. Saina became India’s senior badminton champion when she was just 17. At 18, she was the junior world champion. The next year, she won the World Superseries. Since then, she has been one of the top four badminton players in the world every year. The film will probably show parts of Saina’s life fans don’t know about yet. Will they see difficulties she faced before becoming a star athlete?

Even Saina is excited about the new film. “It’s a good thing,” she says. “Youngsters get to see their favorite player’s life.”