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Thappad crew had the largest team of strong, opinionated women, says Dia Mirza

The actress plays a single mother in the recently-released Anubhav Sinha film.

Our Correspondent

Dia Mirza, who is part of the ensemble cast of Anubhav Sinha's recent release Thappad (2020), spoke about how the filmmaker has changed over the years. "Anubhav has gained a lot of ‘anubhav’ (experience) with movies like Mulk (2018), Article 15 (2019) and Thappad. His understanding of what he wants to say in his cinema has changed," she said.

The last decade in Hindi cinema has seen a shift, with filmmakers moving from masala movies to social-message films that hold a mirror to society. Even artistes are trying to align themselves with movies that speak the truth, across all platforms. Mirza, a former Miss India, began her career with a music video directed by Sinha, and also worked with him on films like Dus (2005) and Cash (2007).

She wanted a chance to work with him again. "I was waiting for Anubhav to cast me in one of his movies after watching Mulk and Article 15,” Mirza said, when the script of Thappad came her way.

Anurag Kashyap hosts a screening of Anubhav Sinha's Thappad followed by a panel discussion
in Mumbai.

Talking about her experience of working with the Thappad director, she stated, "I think what I regard as wonderful about Anubhav is that he gives us space and knows when his actors understand the nuance of a scene. He is willing to engage with you openly without an ego. If he is clear about a point of view, he asserts it. But even in that assertion, he is still open to hearing you out, which is wonderful. I think I have been fortunate to work with directors like that in the recent past, whether it was Sonam [Nair] on the [web-series] Kaafir or Raju Sir [Hirani] on Sanju (2018)."

Mirza went on to say that artistes today are hungry to engage with society in a way that inspires and motivates them to bring change, while also keeping them entertained. She added, “I think this is a very exciting time for us and it becomes even more exciting when you know there are filmmakers who are willing to take that plunge and tell those stories with you. The Thappad crew had the biggest team of strong, opinionated women and Anubhav chose to be surrounded by us. That itself says a lot about him, what he believes and what he has evolved into."