He wanted me to discuss his script in detail in his hotel room, says Tisca Chopra
Mumbai: Bollywood is no stranger to casting couch. But when a known personality speaks out, you’re bound to listen. Tisca Chopra, the much loved actress from ‘Taare Zameen Par’ and ‘Hyderabad Blues’ recently spoke out about her own personal tryst with casting couch.
Though the issue is as grave a case of professional sexism and intended molestation and harassment can get, Tisca, who was speaking at the ‘Kommune India’ forum, made her experience seem mirthful and borderline hilarious through her narration.
Casting couch, subtly put as opportunities presented in exchange for sexual favours, has often been cited as a perennial hindrance, predominantly faced by newcomers and under-exposed artists across film industries. Narrating an incident from when she had freshly debuted and was out of work, Tisca goes on to facetiously christen her director ‘Reptile’ and narrates how he harboured feelings for her until it finally hit breaking point.
How the actress whisks herself out of the conundrum is a lesson in street-smartness and presence of mind for all and sundry.
Watch the video, to hear it straight from her:
Tisca Chopra’s Mini-Biography:
Tisca Chopra’s vibrant personality and her burning passion to excel is evident in the choices she has made in her life and work. She is known for her unconventional roles and has chosen to be part of stories that she feels need to be told. She has acted in over 40 feature films in different languages with many eminent directors like Aamir Khan, Prakash Jha, Madhur Bhandarkar, Abhinay Deo, Nandita Das and others. Taare Zameen Par, her best known feature film, was India’s official entry to the Academy Awards. It also won her Filmfare and other top nominations. Another feature film, Qissa, premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 2013, and has travelled to over 20 festivals, winning over almost all top awards and much appreciation from audiences and critics. She has been nominated at the New York Indian Film Festival for Best Actress for her work in 10Ml Love, a film based on A Mid Summer Night’s Dream. Her intense performance in the Indian adaptation of the American series ’24’, was much lauded and made her a household name. The series won Best Ensemble Cast. She’s been on the Jury of the prestigious MAMI film festival. Tisca did her Bachelors in Literature from University of Delhi and worked with extensively in theatre with Naseeruddin Shah, Feroz Khan and Satya Dev Dubey. Tisca has acted in the Pulitzer Award winning play, Dinner With Friends, that deals with the state of the modern marriage. The play and Tisca garnered a lot of praise from both, critics and audiences and has travelled to many cities across the world. A practicing Buddhist, she consistently works on issues especially those of women, the girl child and the environment. She has worked with Sam Pitroda on the National Knowledge Commission, to help with revamping the education system and rote learning. Her book Acting Smart (Harper Collins), is a best seller and is being translated into Hindi. She has started work on a film script and plans on producing it.
Syed Ammar Alavi - is Lahore (Pakistan) based journalist & writer with 25-year experience in print, wire and broadcast forms of journalism. His major fields of interest are politics, film,tv,sports, climate change and technology