Madhuri Dixit Nene says she is keen to do meaningful cinema as she believes such films have a positive impact on the audience.
The 90s Hindi cinema superstar, best known for films like Dil, Saajan, Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! and Dil To Pagal Hai, has featured in movies such as Aaja Nachle, Bucket List, Dedh Ishqiya and Maja Ma in her second innings.
“I’m looking for films and roles that are different to do and yet they create an impact on the audience and make them think, the actor said in an interview.
Her new Marathi film Panchak, which she has produced as well, deals with themes such as superstition and the fear of death.
“When I read the script of Panchak, I liked it instantly as it was a different take on superstition with a comic lens. Through the film, we are trying to say that don’t fear in life, keep a balanced outlook,” she said.
Talking about Mrityudand, her 1997 film, Madhuri said many people from the industry advised her not to do the film as it was not a commercial entertainer.
The Prakash Jha-directed movie, also starring Shabana Azmi, Shilpa Shirodkar, Om Puri, was a commentary on social and gender injustice and Madhuri believes it challenged her as an actor.
When I was doing Mrityudand, a lot of people said, You are a commercial film heroine, why are you doing this art house film?’. There were people who were trying to dissuade me from doing it, I did it because I loved the script.”
Madhuri said she has never understood the “demarcation between art house and commercial cinema”. “For us acting is acting, it’s just a different way of expressing, also the way it is done is different. Mrityudand was a great film for me to talk about. I’ve never feared my choices as an actor. I went with my conviction, and gut feeling.
Panchak,directed by Rahul Awate and Jayant Jathar, boasts of an ensemble cast including Kothare, Dilip Prabhavalkar, Bharati Achrekar, Anand Ingale, Tejashri Pradhan, Satish Alekar, Nandita Patkar, Sampada Kulkarni and Deepti Devi.
“We got all the best actors from theatre, TV and films, the casting is very interesting in this film. I found the film interesting because it is based in Konkan, my parents are from Konkan India and we used to visit Ratnagiri a lot, climb trees, eat mangoes, I felt I’ve seen all these characters there, they are so relatable, she said.
Released on January 5 in theatres, Panchak is produced by Madhuri along with her husband, Dr Shriram Nene.