A National Award winner, Neena Gupta last year took the social media route to ask for “good parts to play”. Now the veteran actress, in Cannes for the unveiling of the first look of “The Last Colour”, says she is working on some “very good films”. The first look of “The Last Colour”, around the widows of Vrindavan, was unveiled at the ongoing Cannes Film Festival, and according to Neena, it left the audience “quiet”.
Last year, Neena had posted on Instagram: “I live in Mumbai and working as a good actor looking for good parts to play.” But now she is happy with the slate of projects she has in her kitty. She even made a comeback to writing for “Kehne Ko Humsafar Hai”. “I have done a small role in ‘Veere Di Wedding’, but I have done very nice roles in ‘Mulk’ which stars Rishi Kapoor, then there’s ‘Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar’ and Amit Sharma’s ‘Badhai Ho’. I have shot for these… But now after ‘The Last Colour’, what will I do… What is there after fulfilment,” Neena told IANS over phone from Cannes.
The actress, who has worked across theatre, television and film platforms, calls “The Last Colour” — the debut directorial of star chef Vikas Khanna — her most fulfilling project. “I have recently done four films with very good directors… But this (‘The Last Colour’) was very fulfilling because I was preparing myself that I will act a certain way, my body language will slow down, my eyes will be like that… But when they gave me the sari (to wear for the character), I just became her.
“Vikas kept on telling me what to do, and I kept on doing it… While doing some scenes, he never cut it, and the shot went on… Everything flowed, so it was very fulfilling. We would wonder ‘Kaise ho gaya’. We shot for 10 days, it was very hot at the Varanasi ghats… It was tough, but it happened,” she recounted. In the movie, based on Khanna’s eponymous novel, Neena plays Noor, a widow in Vrindavan who wishes to play Holi but is forbidden by tradition. Noor meets a young tightrope walker, Chhoti, and the film traces their impact on each other’s lives.
The actress was excited about her debut at the Cannes Film Festival. “It was very funny because for many years people I know had been visiting the fest. I was very curious to know what (the) Cannes (film festival) was. But I always used to say I will go with my film… and it has happened,” she said with a laugh.
On working with Khanna, she said she liked his honesty and passion. “I feel that with this film, he has dealt with a major issue in a soft and subtle way, where the story flows so beautifully that you say ‘itni badi baat ho gayi (it has made such a strong statement’,” Neena added.
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