Sonakshi Sinha's Noor turns the tables on Barkha Dutt with an interview

Sinha, who plays a journalist in Noor, interviewed the senior journalist, on the challenges, risks and joys of being a journalist in the Indian media. 

Shriram Iyengar

Sonakshi Sinha might be playing a clumsy entertainment journalist in Sunhil Sippy's Noor, but she has bagged quite the exclusive. The actress interviewed journalist Barkha Dutt as part of the promotional campaign. Looking as comfortable in the chair of the interviewer as Dutt looked in the interviewee chair, Sinha discussed a range of issues from the challenges facing female journalists to the growing breed of media scrutiny on celebrities. 

Starting off with the obvious question of "What made you want to become a journalist?" Sinha looked quite comfortable. However, it was Dutt's response that took the cake. Revealing that she actually wanted to make movies, Dutt said, "I applied for my first job as a sound mixer. I didn't intend on being a reporter." As it stands, Dutt is one of the prominent names in the Indian journalism industry. 

The interview also touched upon a theme shown in the film, the relegation of female journalists to soft jobs. Noor, who wants to be a groundbreaking reporter, finds herself covering trivial news. Dutt said, "I've seen women getting boxed into roles which their bosses, or their colleagues, think that are non-threatening." Dutt went on to share how her mother, one of the first female journalists, was often sent out to cover 'flower shows' instead of serious reporting. 

The one thing the two ladies agreed upon was the new breed of journalists who enter the industry because they think it is glamorous, and try to get 'their mugs on tv'. Hearing this Sinha quipped, "I think I might have come across a couple who just want to get their mugshots on screen."

Dutt though blamed the lack of good editors for this unwelcome trend. 

The ladies did have their differences. Sinha questioned Dutt on the habit of journalists to pose questions to celebrities on issues they have nothing to do with. Dutt countered by saying, "Too many of them (celebrities and film stars) are too timid in this country. I look across at stars overseas and see them taking a big position." Sinha, for her part, stuck to her guns, suggesting that, "You get trolled. Nowadays, people even land up throwing stones at your houses. It is putting yourself in a position of danger." 

Sinha then threw the big question,"What will you do if you had to co-host a show with Arnab Goswami?" Dutt, tried as much to sidestep the question by suggesting the two belong to different thoughts of journalism, but finally admitted "By the way, I think we did a show together in the early years. We used to quarrel even then." 

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Sinha then moved on to an interesting question, "Between a politician and an actor, who is more interesting to interview?" Dutt retorted, "Actors are difficult. They are more opaque." 

Sonakshi Sinha might make a decent journalist if she ever decides to switch careers. 

Noor is directed by Sunhil Sippy, and is scheduled for theatrical release on 21 April.