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“I am a very greedy actor” divya dutta

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The versatile all rounder DIVYA DUTTA tells JYOTHI VENKATESH in this freewheeling telephonic interview exclusively for bollyy.com that Hindi Cinema has evolved thanks to a discerned audience which also has changed over the years.

Though Hostages Season 2 was your second stint at doing a web series, you excelled in your performance as the negotiator cop. How was the experience different from that in a feature film?

I really enjoyed my job not only in Neeraj Pandey’s Special Ops Season1 but also in Sudhir Mishra’s web series Hostages Season 2 though I was not there in the Season earlier. Season 2 had an entirely different plot. In season 2, I play a negotiator. It was more like a woman in a man’s world.

divya dutta

How did you bag the part in Hostages 2/

You would not believe it but I met both Sameer Nair who produced the series as well as Sudhir Mishra who has directed the series at a party. Sudhir asked me why I was not a part of the season 1 of his series and there and then Sameer and Sudhir offered me the role and asked me if I would be a part of his series. I said yes.

Did you attend any workshop to get into the skin of your character?

No work-shop for me, Jyothi. Do not forget that I have put in around 25 years in this line and you know me since then. Jokes apart, there was no need for any home work. The only difference in both the series is that I was being chased in the other web series whereas I am behind the culprit in this web series.

divya dutta

You have been a part of not only feature films, but also TV serials, plays as well as web series. What difference do you find as an actor in all the different media?

To tell you the truth, after having acted in all the media, I find that all are similar and the same as far as my craft is concerned. The only difference is that a film takes a much longer period of time and also the process is different. I have been a part of all the media. You have to be exclusive and good at whatever you set out to do, whether you are acting in a film, TV serial, or for that matter a web series. I am glad that of late roles are being written keeping me in mind as an actress.

Which are the plays in which you had acted till date?

I have been a part of the Punjabi version of the popular play Tumhari Amrita as well as yet another Hindi play.

Is it necessary to be a part of theater in order to learn the craft of acting?

I do not think it is necessary in any way to do theatre to learn what acting is, as long as you have the inclination as well as the desire in you to take up acting, because all said and done, each and every actor has his or her own process of acting as such.

divya dutta

You had made your debut with the film Ishq Mein Jeena Ishq Mein Marna. What has your growth been as an actress from then till today?

I do not think I will be able to evaluate my own growth as an actress because a lot of people with whom I was lucky enough to act, have already been kind enough to evaluate my growth.

Over the last 25 years since you had made your debut as an actress with Ishq Mein Jeena Ishq Mein Marna, in what way do you think has the film industry changed?

The industry has definitely changed a lot. For instance no longer are the typical films being made which have the same formula. Nor are films being made which have the same old genre of the hero-heroine and people are ready to accept changes as far as the plots are concerned which boast of ensemble star cast.

Go on!

Today I feel that Hindi Cinema has evolved thanks to a discerned audience which also has changed over the years. The best thing about the audience today is that they do not want to fed by the old formula anymore and are thirsty for novel experiments

Thanks to the lockdown accelerated by the advent of the coronavirus, the OTT platform has come to the fore now. Do you think Cinema will be affected by the advent of the OTT?

When TV began in our country, people said the same but today you find both Cinema and TV coexisting peacefully and are in fact complementing each other. Similarly I feel that OTT platform will prove to be yet another platform for Cinema and eventually both OTT and Cinema will also ideally co-exist. On the positive side, now you have a choice to watch a film in either OTT or theatre

Can you name the directors who are in your wish list of directors?

Sudhir Mishra, Dibakar Banerjee, Neeraj Pandey, Zoya Akhtar, Vishal Bharadwaj and Meghna Gulzar are a few of the filmmakers who are ion my wish list as an actor.

As an actor, do you at times get the feeling of complacency, because whatever you do has the hallmark of a performer in it?

Till date, the feeling of complacency has not set in me as a performer, before I constantly seek to improve and hone my talent. I hope that complacency never ever comes as far as I am concerned as an actor, because the feeling of complacency can be very worrisome for an actor.

Do you also nurse a secret desire to turn a director sometimes in the near future?

Sorry I have no plans to turn a director at any time in life. I feel that this is the best time for me as an actor because I am being approached by different dynamic filmmakers to act in their projects.

Do you believe in approaching and asking a filmmaker for a particular role if you come to know that and X or Y is making a film on such and such a subject?

What’s the harm in going to a filmmaker and telling him or her that you as an actor are keen in working with him or her, if you come to know that he or she can earmark a role for you in his film? You are not going to get a role just by sitting at home all the time. If I get interested in any particular role, I make it a point to go out and seek the role by approaching the filmmaker.Like I went to Shriram Raghavan and landed myself the role I did in Badlapur.

As an actor, do you think 100 % potential of yours has been exploited by any filmmaker in any film of his till date?

To be frank, I will say that till date, I do not think that 100 % of my latent potential as an actress has been exploited by any filmmaker in any film though I can say that most of my performances have been good.

Can you name some of your best films till date?

I am a very greedy actor and feel that every role that I have done has been different and do not regret having done any role till date. If in particular, you are bent upon knowing which are my best films as far as my performances are concerned, they are Dilli 6, Ram Singh Charlie, Blackmail, Shaheed E Mohabbat Bhoota Singh (Punjabi)

What next?

Right now, I am in talks with the makers of a web series. It is too early to talk about my film projects.

Are there any plans to come up with an autobiography?

I am still writing the second part of my autobiography ‘Me and Maa”. Anurag Kashyap recently told me that I should think of making a film out of my book ‘Me & Maa’ , as a tribute to my late mother.