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HindustanTimes Fri,26 Dec 2014

It's time to have access to our own theatre: Nandita Das

Subuhi Parvez, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, August 12, 2014
First Published: 12:19 IST(12/8/2014) | Last Updated: 12:33 IST(12/8/2014)

Actor-director Nandita Das — who’s known for her powerful performances in films such as Fire (1996) and Earth (1998) — says she’s happy doing different things and isn’t looking forward to take up Bollywood films.

“If you’ve seen me only on the fringes of mainstream cinema for the last 18 years, it’s unlikely that I’d want to get into Bollywood now. While I’m perceived as an actor, a very small part of my life revolves around it,” says Das, who recently introduced CinePlays — a concept conceived by her husband, Subodh Maskara — to Delhi. As part of the initiative, they recently screened recorded versions of Vickram Kapadia’s Bombay Talkies and Mohan Rakesh’s Adhe Adhure, in the city.

Actor Nandita Das and husband Subodh Maskara in a still from the play, Between The Lines

“The concept allows to break the barrier of language, logistics, economics and accessibility. Today, you could be sitting in Australia or Agra and have access to plays on your screen. It is not just for entertainment, as they can be used as educational tools, corporate training tools and for the archives for posterity,” Das points out.

“The idea stems from the fact that today, more than ever, it’s important that stories from theatre are accessible and documented.”
The 44-year-old is known for her brave initiatives and support for social causes and says she works on things she strongly believes in. “My role is more of a supporter. I’ve always supported brave new ideas but I can’t take the credit of driving it. Subodh has put together a vibrant, young team that’s not afraid to try new things. Also, we see and appreciate Broadway and international theatre, so isn’t it time we had access to our own theatre?” she asks.

(L-R): Actors Ira Dubey, Lillete Dubey and Mohan Agashe

Between The Lines is another play which Das co-wrote, directed and acted in, along with her husband. For now, Das is busy writing her next directorial feature and will soon leave for the US  for her Yale World Fellowship.

“Till the end of the year, I’ll be juggling between being a student, a faculty, writing my script and taking care of my four-year old son. I can’t handle more,” she concludes.
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