Shabana Azmi and Javed Akhtar officially launched The Stars in My Sky: Those Who Brightened My Film Journey, the second book authored by National-Award winning actress Divya Dutta. The happy occasion saw several eminent guests in attendance, including Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Sriram Raghavan, Gurdas Maan, Deepak Bahry, Sameer Nair and Rajit Kapur who hosted the event with Divya.
The event began with Divya reading an excerpt from the book, which is incidentally about people who’ve been an important part of her professional journey. Some of these include Amitabh Bachchan, Javed Akhtar, Shabana Azmi, Gurdas Maan, Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Gulzar Sahab, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, and Nitin Kakkar. She also answers a volley of questions.
Have you mentioned your mom in the book?
This book is a huge gift for Mom. I have come a long way today, but without her blessings, I wouldn’t have been in the movies. Thanks to her I am even here and know these people.
Has anyone told you that you have a twinkle in your eyes?
Yes, I’ve been complimented by many about that. I think it’s the child in me that brings out that special twinkle — that gentleness, sincerity and love, all of which is true.
What’s your book about?
While it’s not based on my life, it’s on my life and association with many in the industry, such as Shabanaji, Javedji and Rakeysh Mehra. There’s a chapter on each of them.
What’s in the chapter about Shabana Azmi?
I’ve highlighted everything I know about Shabanaji and her films. I’ve made a special mention of Chalk N Duster and Sheer Qorma in which we shared screen space.
How do you look at your film journey?
Love’s been coming my way from every one and they want me to work with me. I think that’s my achievement and I wish to keep working.
What are your forthcoming films?
I recently completed the Tahira-Kashyap directorial Sharma Jee Ki Beti. Director Dibakar Banejee’s Freedom will release shortly on Netflix. There is also an Umesh-Shukla directorial and I’m also playing a gangster villain in Dhaakad, a fictional film, which is the first time I’ve got to don such a character, and it was interesting and challenging all at once. Then, I have some web shows and 2 English films coming up, about which I cannot reveal anything yet.
Any messages you’d like to share with newbies to Bollywood?
Anybody who’s here has to make it through their hard work. Talent and sincerity also plays a vital role in making you successful. If you adhere to all of this, nobody can stop you.
Would the book get done as a biopic?
It’s not a biopic for now; I’ve no idea what life has in store for me. Today has been extremely great. But if at all anyone wishes to paint it onto the celluloid. It would depend as to who wants it?