Working with Female Director has Perks: Dia Mirza

Dia is playing the lead actor alongside Mohit Raina in the series

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Dia Mirza
Producer Dia Mirza cares for safe work ecosystem in company. Wikimedia Commons

Actress Dia Mirza, who has wrapped up the first schedule of drama series “Kaafir” helmed by Sonam Nair, says that working with a female director has great perks.

As the lady at the fore in “Kaafir”, she plays what she terms as one of her career’s “most challenging roles”. The first schedule of the shoot in Himachal Pradesh recently came to an end.

Dia Mirza
Dia Mirza. (Wikimedia Commons)

“The first schedule has been a wonderful experience. I have had the chance to meet so many people, and learn so much from them. The locals have been so welcoming towards the entire crew and they have also fed us amazing food,” Dia said in a statement.

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“Working with a female director has great perks. We cuddle in the cold, we cry together but most of all, we get each other. I am so glad I have found a sister in Sonam Nair. She makes work such a joy,” she added.

Dia is playing the lead actor alongside Mohit Raina in the series. (IANS)

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Dharavi Musicians Create Rap Anthem, Urge People to Wear Masks

Music from the lanes of Dharavi

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rap
A rap anthem was created urging people to wear masks. Pixabay

By Puja Gupta

Young rap musicians from Dharavi, Mumbai have created a unique trilingual rap anthem to urge people to wear masks, get timely tests and stay home to curb community spread of coronavirus in densely populated spaces.

The song “Stay Home Stay Safe” in Hindi, Marathi and Tamil is produced by Gully Gang Entertainment, directed by Joel D’Souza and written, composed and performed by Mc Altaf, Tony Psyko (Dopeadelicz) and Bonz N Ribz (7 Bantaiz).

It also features popular rapper Divine along with popular Bollywood, Tollywood and Marathi cinema stars such as Ajay Devgn, Akshay Kumar, Atul Kulkarni, Dia Mirza, Rana Daggubati and Suniel Shetty who have lent their voice to the cause.

Created out of their own experience of living in close quarter in Dharavi which is considered as Asia’s largest slum, the musicians try to reinforce that it is essential to aid the efforts of police and the doctors who are working tirelessly to save people and educate people in densely populated places to adopt safe and healthy habits despite the cramped quarters in which they live.

Dharavi_India
The anthem was created by Rap musicians from Dharavi, Mumbai. Wikimedia Commons

Mc Altaf Shaikh of Gully Gang states: “Stay Home, Stay Safe aspires to drive home the message of how safety should be of highest importance to each and every one and we should strictly follow preventive measures as prescribed by the authorities..Right now if you are alive, consider it a blessing and stop complaining. Assist the COVID warriors in carrying out their duties diligently.”

Tony Sebastian of Dopeadelicz states, “Stay Home, Stay Safe is a multi- lingual track about the unprecedented global pandemic and we are creating awareness around the need to follow protocols and guidelines, keeping your surroundings clean, co-operating with the government and supporting the frontline workers. With unity and cooperation, we can maintain social distancing and eradicate this virus by staying home and staying safe. Jai Hind.”

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Lending his support to the initiative, actor Suniel Shetty said: “It’s an absolute honour and pleasure to be a part of this beautiful initiative. These are trying times and it is so humbling to see so many people come together to spread a message, that too, so powerfully. This song truly touched my heart, and I know the emotion will speak to many. Thank you for making me a small part of it.”

Suniel_Shetty
“It’s an absolute honour and pleasure to be a part of this beautiful initiative. These are trying times and it is so humbling to see so many people come together to spread a message, that too, so powerfully.”, actor Suniel Shetty said. Wikimedia Commons

Echoing his words, actor Dia Mirza said:

“This effort is a onderful example of encouraging behavioural change and spreading awareness that has been made possible with these amazing artists! I feel grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this effort and truly wish it encourages more people to understand the importance and need to stay home and stay safe.”

The anthem and music video are a part of a larger #StayHomeStaySafe campaign supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the ATE Chandra Foundation that seeks to unite communities in densely populated areas in the fight against coronavirus. (IANS)

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I haven’t Worked Enough with Women Directors, Says Actress Dia Mirza

She was recently appointed the UN Secretary General's Advocate of Sustainable Development Goals

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Dia Mirza
Dia Mirza. (Wikimedia Commons)

For actress Dia Mirza, who is also a film producer, it’s a thing to ponder that in a career of over 15 years, she has worked with women directors only twice.

“It is appalling that in my career of over 15 years, I did not get enough chances to work with women directors… it has been hardly one or two times. I did not intentionally choose not to work with women filmmakers. Unfortunately, there were hardly any women on the director’s chair till a few years ago,” Dia told IANS over phone.

Dia had worked in Reema Kagti-directed “Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd” in 2007. And years after that, she is now under the direction of Sonam Nair in a web series titled “Kaafir”.

The 38-year-old actress feels “a lot” has changed for women in the industry over the years.

“I am a huge supporter of women claiming their space and backing their voices because I think they have some very important things to say and stories to share.

“So, each time I see a woman achieve success on the merits of her thought and action, I am happy to cheer the loudest,” added Dia.

After acting and production, is direction next on her mind?

“I am definitely going to direct one day,” Dia said, with excitement reflecting in her tone.

“It’s just a matter of being certain about the story that I want to tell. Once that is clear to me, I will most certainly call ‘action’,” she said.

Dia Mirza
Dia Mirza. Flickr

Dia is also making a foray in the digital medium as a producer. Dia and her husband Sahil Sangha, who run the banner Born Free Entertainment, have produced the upcoming web show “Mind The Malhotras” in collaboration with Applause Entertainment.

“Our experience as producers teaches us only one thing — give the narrative all that it deserves and requires in terms of budget, give your team even more love than they may desire and you will have a happy team with hopefully always a quality product,” she said.

Before the web show, Dia is credited as producer for films like “Love Breakups Zindagi” and “Bobby Jasoos”.

“As far as the economics go for a web show or a film, I think each story and its duration in terms of minutes delivered has its own basic cost, so there is no cost distinction per se,” Dia said.

But as an actor, she found it a different experience to work in a film vis-a-vis in a project for the web medium.

“The web medium gives more exposure to actors in terms of time one can invest on the characters. Web shows are like novels. You have to go deep into the characters to understand it. One gets more time to spend with the characters. It is a boon for actors,” she asserted.

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Dia was a teenager when she won the Miss Asia Pacific title in 2000 and later rose to fame with Bollywood film “Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein”. She has not just worked as an actor but also invested herself in philanthropy.

As a UN Goodwill Ambassador for the environment since 2017, Dia has campaigned for the cause extensively.

She was recently appointed the UN Secretary General’s Advocate of Sustainable Development Goals. (IANS)

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Actress-Producer Dia Mirza Ensures Safe Working Ecosystem in Her Company

Dia Mirza extended support to the #MeToo movement that has gained momentum in India after actress Tanushree Dutta accused veteran actor Nana Patekar of misconduct during the shoot of "Horn Ok Pleassss" ten years ago

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Dia Mirza
Producer Dia Mirza cares for safe work ecosystem in company. Wikimedia Commons

Actress-producer Dia Mirza says she and her husband Sahil Sangha will ensure that their production company Born Free Entertainment will encourage women to speak up and will care for a safe working ecosystem.

Dia Mirza on Monday tweeted: “It’s important that individuals are finding courage to speak up. And even more important that the media approach this with sensitivity, care and due investigation.

“Harassment of any kind at a workplace or anywhere else is absolutely unacceptable. We all want to live and work within an ecosystem that is safe and fair for all. I hope that the strictest action is taken against anyone found guilty of violating this fundamental right. It is important that cases be registered and due investigation conducted. Media must report facts.”

Dia Mirza
Dia Mirza, Flickr

Dia captioned the post: “Support those that find the courage to express their truth. Use this time to introspect. As we have. As producers we will ensure that our company Born Free Entertainment encourages women to speak up. Already working on gender balance we care for a safe work ecosystem. #Metoo”

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Dia Mirza extended support to the #MeToo movement that has gained momentum in India after actress Tanushree Dutta accused veteran actor Nana Patekar of misconduct during the shoot of “Horn Ok Pleassss” ten years ago. (IANS)

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