Prakash Jha helped me develop my own voice: Alankrita Shrivastava

Jha is producing Shrivastava’s film Lipstick Under My Burkha which will premiere today (26 October) at the 18th Mumbai Film Festival.

Sonal Pandya

Lipstick Under My Burkha just had its world premiere at the Tokyo International Film Festival which was attended by writer-director Alankrita Shrivastava and actresses Plabita Borthakur and Aahana Kumra. The film will have its Indian premiere today at the Jio MAMI 18th Mumbai Film Festival with Star. 

Shrivastava spoke to us, just as the film’s trailer was released and talked about her producer Prakash Jha’s help in guiding and mentoring Lipstick Under My Burkha. She said, “He’s been very instrumental in helping me develop my own voice because I feel a lot of producers when they produce films for people who have worked with them for many years, like I have, they tend to encourage them to make films which are very similar to what they make.”

Shrivastava worked as an assistant director on Jha’s films Apaharan (2005) and Raajneeti (2010). She elaborated, “I feel Mr Jha’s greatest gift to me has been that he has really encouraged me to look inside myself and think about what it is that I want to say. I think that is phenomenal. He never once asked me that ‘Oh, why do you want to make a film which is about women, from the women’s point of view?’ or any such thing. I wish that more mainstream filmmakers become supportive of newer voices, I feel we have many, many more interesting films.”

Shrivastava felt he gave her space to develop her script and film properly, without any interference.  After MAMI, Lipstick Under My Burkha will have its European premiere at the Stockholm International Film Festival in November.