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“Marathi cinema makes you think”

The mother’s role has always enjoyed a place of pride in Hindi cinema. It hadstrength and lent weight to a film, and was once occupied by powerhouse talents such as Nirupa Roy and Lalita Pawar. In recent times, we have watched her play this role with aplomb – Nirrmite Saawant (Aiyyaa),  has been applauded for their performance in the film . Over to her

Background

She’s a well-known name in the Marathi film industry with television serials including Kumari Gangubai Non-Matric, and movies like Bindhaast, Kay Dyache Bola, Hee Porgi Kunachi to her credit. She’s also big as a theatre artiste. Her debut Hindi film, Horn Ok Please, was never released. Her second film Aiyyaa tanked but she’s definitely made her presence felt.

Initial Days

I didn’t go to drama or acting school, nor college. I believe acting runs in my blood. My mother has always inspired me. She used to direct dramas and choreograph for local shows.

First Break

I used to work in solo acts and plays and I was doing experimental theatre. I was never interested in commercial drama. One day, I got a call from Mohan Wagh, whose banner Chandralekha is one of the biggest banners in Marathi theatre. I couldn’t say no to him. That play was called Double Trouble and it became very popular. After that, I didn’t stop doing commercial plays. My roles in experimental theatre were serious. It was commercial theatre that introduced me to the comic act.

Serials/TV Shows

Marathi filmmakers keep tab on theatre artistes. My first TV serial happened when I was doing a play. Sachin Pilgaonkar spotted me and offered me a role in his serial Tu Tu Main Main. That’s how it started. As for films, I had worked with Chandrakant Kulkarni, so when he was making Bindhaast, he cast me in a good role. The film became a big hit and my filmy career started.

Hindi film Industry

I have been getting offers from the Hindi film industry for a long time. Now this may sound weird but, because I have a fan following in the Marathi industry, I didn’t want them to get upset. Also, the roles that were being offered here were really small. I didn’t want to compromise by accepting roles of negligible characters.

First Hindi Film

I had worked with Rakesh Sarang, so when he was making Horn Ok Please, he offered me a good role. He also said that Nana Patekar wanted me to do the role. But the film didn’t release. I had never worked with Sachin Kundalkar but had seen his work in Marathi. So when he approached me with the script, I agreed. I am also a big fan of Anurag Kashyap and have wanted to work with him for a long time. When he praised my work, it felt really good.

More Hindi Films, Maybe?

In the Hindi industry, they call you and ask you to audition. I have worked in this industry for more than 20 years so they should be aware of my work. I am not saying I don’t want to audition… a look test is fine. But don’t expect me to perform and convince you that I can act.

Hindi Versus Marathi

In Hindi cinema, it’s always all about the hero and heroine, whereas in Marathi cinema, it’s the story that plays the important role. Thought-provoking films work more in Marathi whereas commercial masala movies work in Hindi.

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