Nandita at an Event
|Born||7 November 1969 (age 52)|
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
|Years active||1989, 1996–present|
(m. 2002; div. 2007)
|Honours||Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (2011)|
Nandita Das (born 7 November 1969) is an Indian actress and director. She has acted in over 40 feature films in ten different languages. Das won accolades for numerous performances, including in Fire (1996), Earth (1998), Bawandar (2000), Kannathil Muthamittal (2002), Azhagi (2002), Kamli (2006), and Before The Rains (2007). Her directorial debut Firaaq (2008), premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and traveled to more than 50 festivals, winning more than 20 awards. Her second film as a director was Manto (2018). Based on the life of 20th Century Indo-Pakistani short story writer Sadat Hasan Manto, the film was screened at Cannes Film Festival in the "Un Certain Regard" section. In September 2019, Das produced a two-minute Public Service Announcement music video India's Got Colour. The music video is about the issue of colourism and urges the audience to celebrate India's diversity of skin colour. Her first book was 'Manto & I' chronicles her 6-year long journey of making the film. She wrote, directed, produced and acted in a short film called, Listen to Her, that sheds light on the increase in domestic violence and overburden of work that women have been facing during the lockdown.
Das has served twice on the jury of the Cannes Film Festival. In 2005, she served on the main competition jury alongside Fatih Akin, Javier Bardem, Salma Hayek, Benoît Jacquot, Emir Kusturica, Toni Morrison, Agnès Varda, and John Woo. In 2013, she served on the Cinéfondation and short films jury with Jane Campion, Maji-da Abdi, Nicoletta Braschi, and Semih Kaplanoğlu.
In 2011, she was made Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters) by the French Government, one of the nation's highest civilian awards. She was commended for her "contribution towards the development of Indo-French cooperation in the field of cinema." In 2009, France released a stamp featuring Das, from artist Titouan Lamazou's project "Women of the World."
Das was the first Indian inducted into the International Hall of Fame of the International Women's Forum in Washington, DC. She was recognized in 2011 for "her sustained contributions to the arts and to the world as one of the most gripping cinema arts leaders of our time." Her fellow inductees were Anna Fendi, Heidi Klum, and Madam Chen Zhili.
Early life and education
Das' father is the artist Jatin Das, and her mother is Varsha Das, a writer. She was born in Mumbai and grew up mostly in Delhi in an Odia family, where she attended the Sardar Patel Vidyalaya school. She received bachelor's degree in Geography from Miranda House and Master of Social Work from the Delhi School of Social Work, both affiliated with the University of Delhi.
She has also taught at the Rishi Valley School.
Das has acted in over 40 feature films with directors such as Mrinal Sen, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Shyam Benegal, Deepa Mehta, and Mani Ratnam. She began her acting career with the street theatre group Jana Natya Manch. She is best known for her performances in director Deepa Mehta films Fire (1996) and Earth (1998; alongside Aamir Khan), Bawander (directed by Jagmohan Mundhra), and Naalu Pennungal (directed by Adoor Gopalakrishnan ). She has also acting in the movie Before the Rains, an Indian-British period drama film directed by Santosh Sivan.She has acted in films in ten different languages: English, Hindi, Bengali, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Marathi, Odia, and Kannada. The Tamil actor Sukanya provided Das' speaking voice in the Tamil classic Kannathil Muthamittal.
In 2008, she directed her first film, Firaaq. The film is a work of fiction "based on a thousand true stories" and is set a month after the 2002 Gujarat riots in India. It is an ensemble film that interweaves multiple stories over a 24-hour period, as the characters from different strata of society, grapple with the lingering effects of violence. Das said that the film "gave a voice to so much that remains silent". In 2018, Nandita directed Manto. Das decided to make a film on Manto after reading a translation of his stories in 2012. She always had Nawazuddin Siddiqui in mind for the role and approached him for the same. The film was premiered in Cannes film festival in 2018. The film was also screened at Toronto International film festival. In 2019 Das produced and directed a PSA music video, 'India's Got Colour'.
Das narrated the children's audiobook series Under the Banyan, and Mahatma Gandhi's autobiography by Charkha Audiobooks, The Story of My Experiments with Truth. She was also a voice actor in the children's television series Wonder Pets, as the Bengal Tiger in the episode Save the Bengal Tiger (2007).
Listen to Her
During the pandemic, in May 2020, she wrote, directed and acted in a short film called, Listen to Her. The 7 min film, produced by Nandita Das Initiatives, is about the increase in domestic violence and overburden of work that women are facing during the lock-down. It was supported by UNESCO, UNFPA, UNICEF, UN Women and South Asia Foundation.
In 2002, Das married Saumya Sen. The couple began Leapfrog, a media organisation geared towards making socially conscious ad films. The couple divorced in 2007.[failed verification] After dating Subodh Maskara, a Mumbai industrialist, for a couple of months, she married him on 2 January 2010 and moved to Mumbai. Das and Maskara have a son named Vihaan. In January 2017, the couple announced that they have parted ways.
Das has master's degree in Social Work from the University of Delhi. She has worked for children's rights, HIV/AIDS awareness, to end violence against women. In 2009, Das was appointed Chairperson of the Children's Film Society of India. In 2012, she was the guest of honour at the iVolunteer Awards, held in Mumbai. Das also donated to the launch of the investigative journalism magazine Tehelka, founded by Tarun Tejpal.
India's Got Colour (Dark is Beautiful) campaign
In 2013, Das became the face of the "Dark is Beautiful" campaign. Launched by Women of Worth in 2009, the campaign aims to draw attention to the effects of discrimination based on skin color in India. The campaign urges women and men to celebrate the beauty and diversity of all skin tones, using slogans such as "Stay UNfair, Stay Beautiful." Das said in 2014: In the [Indian film] industry a makeup man or a cinematographer would come and say can you lighten your skin a little, especially when you are playing the middle class educated character. In 2019, the Campaign was reinvented as India’s Got Colour. Along with Mahesh Mathai, Nandita Das has produced and co-directed a two-minute PSA for the campaign. The music video features several eminent artists from the Indian Film Industry.
Das has been a featured speaker at various platforms in India and abroad, including at MIT (in 2007, after a screening of Fire), and at Tufts University (in 2014, on gender in society and cinema).
In 2016, she gave a TEDx talk at TEDxWalledCity on "The Biggest Hypocrisy of Our Times: Our Attitude to Poverty." In 2011, she spoke at TEDxNarimanPoint, on "Transformation in Education".
In 2019. she gave a Tedx talk at TEDxShivNadarUniversity about A Mother's Journey With Anger
- For Acting
|2000||45th Filmfare Awards||1947 Earth||Best Debut||Won|
|2001||Santa Monica Film Festival||Bawander||Best Actress||Won|
|2002||Cairo International Film Festival||Amaar Bhuvan||Best Actress||Won|
|2002||Tamil Nadu State Film Awards||Kannathil Muthamittal||Special Prize||Won|
|2006||Nandi Awards||Kamli||Best Actress||Won|
|2007||Madrid International Film Festival||Maati Maay (A Grave-keeper's Tale)||Best Actress||Won|
|2013||60th Filmfare awards (South)||Neerparavai||Best Supporting actor||Nominated|
- For Direction
|2008||Asian Festival of First Films||Firaaq||
|2009||Kara Film Festival||Best Film||Won|
|2009||International Film Festival of Kerala||Special Jury Award||Won|
|2009||Thessaloniki International Film Festival||Special Prize (Everyday Life: Transcendence or Reconciliation Award)||Won|
|2010||Filmfare Awards||Special Award||Won|
|2018||Cannes Film Festival||Manto||Un Certain Regard Award||Nominated|
|2018||Toronto International Film Festival||People's Choice Award||Nominated|
|2018||Asia Pacific Screen Award||FIAPF (films in the Asia Pacific region)||Won|
|2019||Filmfare Awards||Best Film (Critics)||Nominated|
In August 2018 Power Brands awarded Nandita Das the Bharatiya Manavata Vikas Puraskar for being a polymath with purpose, advocating issues of communal harmony, peace and social justice, especially for women, children and the marginalized "others" through various platforms, for her expressions of courage and compassion on celluloid and her steadfast faith in the power of cinema effecting social change for a better world.
|Denotes films that have not yet been released|
|1995||Ek Thi Goonja||Goonja||Bappa Ray||Hindi|
|1998||1947 Earth||Shanta, the Ayah||Deepa Mehta||Hindi||Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut|
|Hazaar Chaurasi Ki Maa||Nandini Mitra||Govind Nihalani||Hindi|
|1999||Deveeri||Deveeri (Akka)||Kavita Lankesh||Kannada|
|Rockford||Lily Vegas||Nagesh Kukunoor||English|
|Best Actress at Santa Monica Film Festival|
|2001||Aks||Supriya Verma||Rakesh Mehra||Hindi|
|Daughters of the Century||Charu||Tapan Sinha||Hindi|
|2002||Aamaar Bhuvan||Sakina||Mrinal Sen||Bengali||Best Actress at Cairo Film Festival|
Zee Cine Award for Best Actor – Female
|Azhagi||Dhanalakshmi||Thangar Bachan||Tamil||Nominated-Filmfare Award for Best Actress – Tamil|
|Kannathil Muthamittal||Shyama||Mani Ratnam||Tamil||Tamil Nadu State Film Award Special Prize|
|Lal Salaam||Rupi(alias Chandrakka)||Gagan B. Borate||Hindi|
|2003||Ek Alag Mausam||Aparna Verma||KP Sasi||Hindi|
|Bas Yun Hi||Veda||Raja Menon||Hindi|
|Supari||Mamta Sikri||Padam Kumar||Urdu|
|Shubho Mahurat||Mallika Sen||Rituporno Ghosh||Bengali|
|Kagaar: Life on the Edge||Aditi||N Chandra||Hindi|
|Ek Din 24 Ghante||Sameera Dutta||KP Sasi||Hindi|
|2004||Vishwa Thulasi||Sita||Sumathy Ram||Tamil|
|2005||Fleeting Beauty||Indian woman||English|
|2006||Maati Maay||Chandi||Chitra Palekar||Marathi||Madrid International Film Festival (2007), Best Actress|
|Kamli||Kamli||KNT Sastry||Telugu||Nandi Award for Best Actress|
|2007||Before the Rains||Sajani||Santosh Sivan||English,
|Provoked||Radha Dalal||Jagmohan Mundhra||English|
|Naalu Pennungal||Kamakshi||Adoor Gopalakrishnan||Malayalam|
|Paani: A Drop of Life||Mira Ben||Hindi||Short film|
|2008||Ramchand Pakistani||Champa||Mehreen Jabbar||Urdu||Pakistani film|
|2012||Neerparavai||Esther||Seenu Ramaswamy||Tamil||Nominated—SIIMA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role – Tamil|
Nominated—Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress – Tamil
|2014||Rastres de Sàndal||Mina Kuminar||English,
|2017||Khamosh! Adalat Jaari Hai||Leela Benare||Ritesh Menon||Hindi|
|2018||Dhaad||Monghi||Paresh Naik||Gujarati||shot in 2001|
|2019||Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyun Aata Hai?||Stella||Soumitra Ranade||Hindi||Remake of classic Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyoon Aata Hai|
|2021||Virata Parvam||Venu Udugula||Telugu|||
|Best Film and Best Screenplay at Asian Festival of First Films|
Purple Orchid Award for Best Film at Asian Festival of First Films
Special Jury Award at International Film Festival of Kerala
Special Prize at International Thessaloniki Film Festival
Filmfare Special Award
Nominated—Golden Alexander at International Thessaloniki Film Festival
|2017||In Defence of Freedom||Hindi||Short film|
|2019||India's Got Colour||Hindi||Music Video|
- Scroll Staff (12 April 2018). "Nandita Das's 'Manto' to be premiered at Cannes Film Festival". Scroll.in. Retrieved 11 November 2019.
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- Ians (16 April 2011). "French honour for Nandita Das". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
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- "Mahatma Gandhi Autobiography - Audiobooks free download". www.mkgandhi.org. Retrieved 4 April 2018.
- Save the Bengal Tiger, Brielle Barbusca, Nandita Das, Teala Dunn, retrieved 4 April 2018CS1 maint: others (link)
- "Nandita, Saumya remain friends". OneIndia. 2 August 2006. Archived from the original on 8 July 2012. Retrieved 20 June 2009.
- "Her own person". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 19 December 2004. Archived from the original on 30 September 2008. Retrieved 20 June 2009.
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- TEDx Talks (21 March 2016). "The biggest hypocrisy of our times: Our attitude to Poverty - Nandita Das - TEDxWalledCity" – via YouTube.
- TEDx Talks (20 September 2011). "TEDxNarimanPoint - Nandita Das - Transformation in Education" – via YouTube.
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- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 9 May 2019. Retrieved 9 May 2019.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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- Taran Adarsh [@taran_adarsh] (6 March 2019). "Manav Kaul, Nandita Das and Saurabh Shukla... #AlbertPintoKoGussaKyunAataHai - an official remake of the cult classic by Saeed Akhtar Mirza - to release on 12 April 2019... Directed by Soumitra Ranade... The 1980 classic starred Naseeruddin Shah, Shabana Azmi and Smita Patil. t.co/e3JaquzPMI" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Taran Adarsh [@taran_adarsh] (14 December 2020). "RANA DAGGUBATI NEW POSTER... On #RanaDaggubati's birthday today, Team #ViraataParvam unveil the new poster... Final schedule is in progress in #Hyderabad... The #Telugu film costars #SaiPallavi, #NanditaDas and #Priyamani... Directed by Venu Udugula... D Suresh Babu presentation. t.co/sfrEpk5pr0" (Tweet) – via Twitter.