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Thursday, December 02, 2021

Pune’s theatre actor Gillian Pinto makes movie debut

Nirmal Anand Ki Puppy,the one-and-a-half hour film, is written and directed by independent filmmaker Sandeep Mohan. It will be released in Pune on October 30.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune |
Updated: October 29, 2021 8:08:35 am
Gillian Pinto, lead actress in Nirmal Anand Ki Puppy.

Pune’s Gillian Pinto, a theatre actor, has made her movie debut as lead actor in Nirmal Anand Ki Puppy that will be released in the city on October 30. After over a decade of theatre experience with noted directors like Lillette Dubey, Hina Siddiqui, Faezeh Jalali, Sunil Shanbag and others, Pinto will be seen on the silver screen in this film that has already been released in Chandigarh, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Delhi, Gurgaon and Mumbai.

The one-and-a-half hour film is written and directed by independent filmmaker Sandeep Mohan. The story revolves around the lives of Nirmal Anand (Karanveer Khullar), an anti-diabetic-drug salesman, and his wife Sarah (Gillian Pinto). The film is woven around the couple’s dynamics and two events – Nirmal diagnosed with diabetes and the disappearance of his dog (Parie) making them react in unexpected ways. It showcases their grief, love, respect for each other and how modern-day relationships require an equal amount of compromise and understanding from both partners.

Film Nirmal Anand Ki Puppy’s poster.

The film has been appreciated at several international film festivals like Jagran Film Festival -Mumbai, Cinequest – USA, IndoGerman Filmweek – Berlin and has won the award for the best screenplay at DCSouth Asian Film Festival (DCSAFF) – Washington DC.

“I was elated to have got the opportunity to play a lead role in this film by one of the finest independent filmmakers. The character of Sarah is layered and nuanced and it was very exciting to step into her shoes, live her life as the film progressed. While she is Nirmal’s wife, Sarah is also a career-centric woman, mother of two little children and a puppy. This is a story of love, loss, heartbreak, joy, relationships and family life in general,” Pinto tells The Indian Express.

Pinto, who prepared for the role of a pregnant woman and mother, spoke to several women and tried to understand their life, goals, challenges and aspirations. “Understanding the day-to-day joys and struggles, Sarah really taught me the power of empathy,” says this Pune woman who studied at St Mary’s school and completed her post-graduation from Wadia College.

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Pinto worked at a corporate firm before she took up acting. She freelanced as an actor-facilitator with Steps Drama Learning Development – a UK based behavioural training company.

“We use drama both live and media-based to challenge thinking, create debate, inform and explore in practice and test out ideas in a way that’s honest , engaging and enjoyable,” says Pinto who also Co-Founded a people’s movement “PadSquad” during the Covid-19 lockdown in June 2020. Padsquad has been distributing menstrual hygiene products to women in slums, towns and villages across the country, with the help of donations.

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