This week on Friendly Fridays we got a chance to interview an Interviewer, a Film Critic, an Author, a Journalist and one of the key persons behind Mumbai Film Festival (MAMI), Anupama Chopra.
They say do what you love and love what you do, here we have someone who is doing exactly that. Anupama’s love for Bollywood can be seen from the various career roles that she chose for herself.
She has written several books on Indian Cinema and has been a film critic for NDTV, India Today, as well as the Hindustan times. She also hosted a weekly film review show The Front Row With Anupama Chopra, on Star World.
Let’s start our rendezvous with her!
Team ED: Out of all your diverse fields of work, which one do you find the most satisfying?
Anupama Chopra: They are all satisfying in different ways. So I cannot really choose one.
I love doing all, be it interviewing talents, critiquing a film, writing a book or organising a film festival, everything I do has to do with films. I like to keep a mix, never just one thing.
Team ED: What’s the one thing you love about your work?
Anupama Chopra: I love the Hindi film industry. I find it amazing to spend time interacting with people associated with films. I am constantly working as I do what I love. And that’s why you won’t find me groaning on a Monday morning at work.
Team ED: Your favourite celebrity interview has been with? And what’s the reason behind it?
Anupama Chopra: I don’t really have favourites, but I was really excited to interview Martin Scorsese. I also interviewed Ang Lee for the New York Times, which was a great experience. While interviewing Shah Rukh, I always have a wonderful time; he is super fun and witty.
Team ED: What has been the high point of your life?
Anupama Chopra: MAMI!
It is the hardest thing I have ever done, this one took everything. It tested me in ways that I haven’t been tested before.
The high point was when we got permissions to do it at the Gateway of India, usually, permissions aren’t granted here because of the attacks. At 4 am seeing it take shape, was an overwhelming experience for me.
Team ED: What’s your take on woman-centric films that are becoming popular these days in the industry and which one is your favourite?
Anupama Chopra: I love all movies, so I do not really have any favourites. There are so many, it would be too restrictive to pick one film. Recently I liked Tanu Weds Manu. I enjoy all these films as they have very interesting women characters.
Team ED: What’s the worst part about being a movie critic? If you don’t like a film by one of your friends, does your review about it get affected?
Anupama Chopra: Time constraint is the biggest problem, like today, I have to see one film from 6 to 9 and another from 9 to 12 and give my review on it.
People spend years on the film and what we get is an hour to critique the film. I really wish we had more time, but there isn’t much that we can do.
Coming to the second part, we don’t really socialise in the film industry, so the review doesn’t get affected.
Team ED: What role do you think social media plays today to grow a business or a franchise?
Anupama Chopra: Social media, I believe plays a critical role and has become extremely important today. However talking about films, I still believe ‘content’ of the film plays a more important role.
Team ED: What’s the craziest thing that you have done till now?
Anupama Chopra: Marrying Vinod Chopra would be the craziest thing that I have done till now (Laughs). Well, because he is mad.
Team ED: What’s your favourite memory from college?
Anupama Chopra: I have many great memories at St Xavier’s College from where I did my graduation. We used to hang out at the canteen for hours and hours. Also, I met a great teacher while I was there, her name is Eunice De Souza (also a famous poet ). It is because of her that I gained interest in Literature and I thoroughly enjoyed my course.
Team ED: What comes to your mind when we say the following words?
Shahrukh Khan: Witty
Barfi: Phir Le Aaya Dil
3 idiots: Wisely funny
MAMI: Herculean Task
Miss Malini: “In awe”, I admire how she has created a business and spread an empire
Thank you so much, Anupama, for giving us time. We loved every bit of this Friendly Fridays interview with you.
With that, it’s a wrap of this fun-filled edition of Friendly Fridays. We will be back again next week, with some more fun and friendly chats. Hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.
See you again next week, till then, adios!
(Interview Conceptualised by Pratishtha Mahajan)
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.