Alaka Sahani


Alaka Sahani is a Senior Editor with The Indian Express, Mumbai. She received the National Film Award for Best Film Critic, 2013. Her Swarna Kamal citation states that the jury recommended her for the award for “highlighting facets of cinema beyond glamour and gossip by delving deeper into the contemporary relevance of iconic filmmakers”. In her articles and interviews, she goes beyond the tried-and-tested templates to offer insights into the workings of Indian cinema. Her choice of subjects is eclectic: from A-listers to emerging talents; the history of Indian cinema and its various trends; many strands of contemporary India and world cinema. While watching movies has been her lifelong passion, she also closely follows theatre in Mumbai.

Pakistan TV serial on Amrita Pritam’s Pinjar to air on Republic Day-eve
Tue, Jan 16, 2018

After seven months of intensive shooting, the small screen adaptation of Pinjar, titled Ghughi — meaning “dove” but often used as a term of endearment for girls — is scheduled to be launched on January 25 at 8 pm Pakistan Standard Time.

‘Indian films should feature in the competition section’
Mon, Jan 08, 2018

Christian Jeune, director of Film Department at Cannes Film Festival, talks about its selection process

If you’re in the right film and look the part, people are interested: Saif Ali Khan
Sat, Jan 06, 2018

Ahead of Kaalakaandi’s release next week, actor Saif Ali Khan talks about his next comedy, working on technique, and rediscovering Mumbai.

If you see something that isn’t right, step in and speak up: Noomi Rapace
Fri, Dec 29, 2017

During her India visit, Swedish actor Noomi Rapace explains why speaking up is important for all cultures and countries

S Durga no-show to nepotism debate: Unsavoury, avoidable episodes that made news this year
Wed, Dec 27, 2017

The year was marked by a series of avoidable episodes that made news.

A Story To Tell
Wed, Dec 27, 2017

Invest in characters, work on content and think out of the box — those were some of the lessons that 2017 imparted to the star-obsessed Hindi film industry.

Mukkabaaz director Anurag Kashyap: I will stand up for anyone who stands up for himself
Sun, Dec 24, 2017

Bollywood filmmaker Anurag Kashyap on being apolitical, holding up a mirror to society and exploring caste politics in sports in his new film. His latest film Mukkabaaz will release in January 2018.

Will Smith: We talk about overarching social ideas of mistreatment in Bright
Wed, Dec 20, 2017

Hollywood actor Will Smith, who made a whistle-stop trip to Mumbai, talks about racism, exploitation in the film industry and concerns about his teenage daughter.

‘It was important that Anna wasn’t portrayed as a victim’
Mon, Dec 18, 2017

Russian actor Elizaveta Boyarskaya shares her journey of playing Anna Karenina

‘Arts must interact and spaces they occupy must be subverted’
Sat, Dec 16, 2017

In a first-of-its-kind collaboration, Carnatic vocalist TM Krishna will perform with Kattaikkuttu artistes of Tamil Nadu in Mumbai

‘This movie is not a statement. It’s a perspective’
Sat, Dec 09, 2017

Filmmaker Aanand L Rai on producing films of fellow directors and making a difference through cinema.

CBFC sees red over S Durga, IFFI floors it; Kerala fest may also miss film
Wed, Nov 29, 2017

The CBFC’s decision puts in jeopardy S Durga’s screening at the International Film Festival of Kerala (IIFK), scheduled to be held from December 8-15 in Thiruvananthapuram.

IFFI jury votes 7:4 for S Durga; awaits I&B ministry, court nod
Tue, Nov 28, 2017

International Film Festival of India officials have deferred the decision to screen S Durga. The festival ends on Tuesday.

A Tale of Two Icons
Mon, Nov 27, 2017

Argentine director Pablo Cesar on the making of Thinking of Him, the closing film of IFFI that revolves around the relationship between Rabindranath Tagore and writer Victoria Ocampo, as well as his love for the Nobel laureate’s work and Satyajit Ray’s films

Director gives censored S Durga to IFFI: It’s about petty ego
Sun, Nov 26, 2017

S Durga director Sasidharan said many films come to festivals without being censored

Home Alone, Almost
Sat, Nov 25, 2017

Vinod Kapri’s thriller, Pihu, centres on the havoc that ego can create in a picture-perfect family. It features only one actor, a two-year-old girl

International Film Festival of India 2017: We use language extremism in our favour, says Prasoon Joshi
Thu, Nov 23, 2017

Joshi agreed with co-panelist Amish Tripathi that the country is going through a cultural “churning”

International Film Festival of India 2017: Still in the Queue
Thu, Nov 23, 2017

Sanal Sasidharan, the director of S Durga, writes to IFFI requesting a screening date for his film

India is a land of stories. Wonder why they can’t be translated into films: Majid Majidi
Wed, Nov 22, 2017

Before leaving IFFI, Goa, Iranian filmmaker Majid Majidi talks about the responsibility to support innovation and young talent

IFFI row: Artists face adverse situation, can’t stop work, says Majid Majidi
Tue, Nov 21, 2017

Majidi said, “Artists face these kind of situations because of the talent and desire they have. That extends to filmmakers too. They should not stop innovation in their work because of adverse conditions.”

IFFI row: Six jury members write to Smriti Irani, voice concern on exclusion of Nude, S Durga
Mon, Nov 20, 2017

The jury members requested Irani to initiate a conversation so that the remaining films are not forgotten in the midst of this controversy.

Amid rising protests, Padmavati release ‘deferred voluntarily’
Mon, Nov 20, 2017

Deepika Padukone's upcoming film Padmavati has been under controversy for a long time. Viacom18 Motion Pictures on Sunday announced it had voluntarily deferred the release date of Padmavati from December 1

Padmavati actor Deepika Padukone: When the heart is in the right place, no one can stop a film
Mon, Nov 20, 2017

A decade ago, Deepika Padukone began her career in films with Farah Khan’s Om Shanti Om. As she returns to Bollywood screens after a two-year break, with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s new production Padmavati, the actor talks about her journey so far, learning to be herself and why she can never be a social media sensation.

Historical or fiction, filmmakers did not state: CBFC on sending back Padmavati
Sun, Nov 19, 2017

"The makers know and admit that the paperwork is not complete. The very disclaimer, whether the film is a work of fiction or a historical, was left blank and not stated. On simply and legitimately being asked to provide important documents, they have targeted the CBFC for the delay. This is truly surprising,” said Joshi.

48th International Film Festival of India: Days after two films dropped from fest, jury chief Sujoy Ghosh resigns
Thu, Nov 16, 2017

Sujoy Ghosh, director of the Bollywood hit Kahaani, confirmed to The Indian Express that he has resigned as head of the jury but declined to offer any comment.

‘There has been no communication, only rejection’
Tue, Nov 14, 2017

Filmmakers Ravi Jadhav and Sanal Sasidharan question the removal of their films from the upcoming edition of IFFI’s Indian Panorama

Cinematic Connections
Wed, Nov 08, 2017

With a slate of cherry-picked movies, indepth interactions and beautiful venues, DIFF provides a great opportunity to reinforce the joys of cinema

Omerta director Hansal Mehta: I’m not going to spoon-feed the audience
Sun, Nov 05, 2017

"I came to the industry without any training. I am still an outsider. Yet, my work has been embraced by people. This is a testament to the fact that I have never given up. I have never looked back at my journey though I revisit my movies with a critical eye," says Hansal Mehta.

The Hills are Alive
Thu, Nov 02, 2017

The Dharamshala International Film Festival, which has gained currency for being ‘intimate’ and showcasing the best of indie cinema, is ready to roll out its sixth edition

Jio Mami Film Festival: The Road Taken
Tue, Oct 17, 2017

Sikkimese filmmaker Karma Takapa’s Ralang Road is about a series of coincidences on a regular foggy day

The Factory Life
Sun, Oct 15, 2017

Debutante Rahul Jain’s Machines presents an incisive look into the the working conditions of unorganised workers at a textile factory in Gujarat

Rising Star: Village Rockstars director Rima Das
Sun, Oct 15, 2017

Why a self-taught filmmaker went back to her village in Assam to shoot a film that is making waves in the festival circuit.

Last appointment hurt them, must make up for lost time: New FTII chairman Anupam Kher
Thu, Oct 12, 2017

The FTII chairman discusses his appointment and plans with The Indian Express Did your appointment come as a surprise? When I got a call from the Ministry of I&B, I was a bit surprised as I was not expecting it. Yesterday, I was promoting my upcoming film Ranchi Diaries and had a motivational lecture in […]

‘Injustice finds its way into most of my stories’
Tue, Oct 10, 2017

Writer-director Devashish Makhija on the making of his second feature film Ajji that has emerged as a festival favourite

Secret Superstar actor Zaira Wasim: A girl with a new song
Sun, Oct 08, 2017

After playing feisty wrestler Geeta Phogat in Dangal, Zaira Wasim is set to play the role of an internet music sensation in her next film Secret Superstar. She will be sharing the screen with Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan for the second time in this film.

Moving the Goalposts
Tue, Oct 03, 2017

Milind Dhaimade’s directorial debut, Tu Hai Mera Sunday, looks at urban life through a bunch of amateur football players and their search for space