The motion poster of Neera Arya was launched with great fanfare in Mumbai recently. Actress Mahima Chaudhry was the guest of honour. Actress-director Roopa Iyer is making her Hindi film debut in the film. Roopa has won several awards and has produced five Films in South Indian languages (Tamil and Kannada). She has also directed four films and more than 20 ads.
Mahima Chaudhry with Roopa Iyer |
Showering all her praises on Roopa, Mahima gushes, “It’s a fantastic subject about freedom fighter Neera Arya. It's a wonderful story to tell. I went deeply into knowing more about her only after I came to know that Roopa is making this film. I got to know so many things. We also continuously come to know about so many unsung heroes who fought for our independence. There are so many unsung women stories which need to be told.”
Mahima Chaudhry and Roopa Iyer with others at the event |
Mahima adds, “Just watching the teaser made me so emotional. There have been so many sacrifices to make our country free from the clutches of the British. We must thank them. The best way we can do that is by letting the new generation know about what all has gone in getting our freedom, and to be where we are today.”
Mahima is confident in Roopa’s abilities. “I am extremely patriotic and watching this teaser I am proud of Roopa that she is directing, producing and acting in it. I am sure it’s going to be challenging but it’s a brave thing to pick up this topic to bring it up on celluloid. However, I am sure she will do justice to it,” Mahima explains.
Roopa reveals how this project came about, “Being a journalist when I was doing the research of patriotic heroes/unsung heroes, generally we have heard names of a few patriotic heroes as I feel the last person standing in the freedom fight is the hero for me. Because these patriots leave their family behind their luxury behind and have sacrificed for their country. When I was reading about it I became very emotional and decided to direct this film. Especially as a woman leader, such a story has never been shown on the big screen. Even at the end of her life, she was selling flowers on the road. She did so much for the country but the country didn’t do much for her. Many things happened in her life, it wasn’t just fighting for the country," Roopa explains.
Raising funds for this women-oriented story of Neera Arya wasn’t an easy task. Roopa states, ”Neera Arya is nothing less than a hero. She has done more than a hero. I feel whatever I will be showing in this film she may have gone through much more. But I need to restrain myself as the film can’t go beyond two hours maximum."
Mahima Chaudhry |
Mahima has been a successful commercial heroine of her times and is known to be very patriotic in real life. When asked about her expectations from the film, she says, “I see so many fascinating women in real life, but a very few on screen. I see a lot of fascinating men on screen, but not very many in real life. I think there are more fascinating women-oriented stories that need to be told now and there are more being made and watched. When it comes to patriotism, we think we think of male freedom fighters. You rarely think of a woman figure and there were so many. It’s going to be dramatic to tell Neera Arya’s story.”
On a parting note, when asked whether she would act in the film if Roopa surprised her by offering her a role in it, Mahima concludes, “(Laughs) We will talk about it later.”