Kajol, Shruti Haasan and Neha Dhupia are coming together for a short film titled Devi. The movie has been directed by debutant Priyanka Banerjee and produced by Niranjan Iyengar and Ryan Stephen’s Electric Apples Entertainment for Large Short Films. Its first look was released on Thursday.
According to the makers, Devi “is the story of nine oppressed women, from different strata of society, living in a small room, faced with the dilemma of sharing their space and stories in a country all too used to tragedy and pain.”
Devi happens to be the first short film of Kajol and Shruti Haasan. It also stars Neena Kulkarni, Mukta Barve, Shivani Raghuvanshi, Sandhya Mhatre, Rama Joshi and Yashaswini Dayama.
Kajol, who was recently seen in Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior, said in a statement, “I couldn’t have chosen a better subject than Devi for my first short film. It’s a powerful statement, written very well by Priyanka. It’s a poignant film which needs to be shared with the world, especially today. My character Jyoti is vastly different from me in many ways, but uncannily, we share a lot too. In today’s times when gender discrimination, abuse and violence is being spoken about vociferously, films like Devi are far more relevant, and I am glad to have got the opportunity to participate.”
Shruti Haasan added, “I loved the concept of the film when I heard it. We often talk about sisterhood and how women need to stand with each other. Devi highlights that aspect in such a lovely way, with such a powerful message. It’s disturbingly poignant and that’s why I knew I had to be a part of it. I couldn’t have found a more perfect film to make my debut on the digital platform.”
Neha Dhupia remarked Devi stayed with her days after she wrapped up the shoot. She said, “Sometimes as an actor, you work in a film for the part that is offered to you and sometimes for the story you are helping the director tell. With Devi, it was the latter. Niranjan, Ryan and Priyanka narrated Devi to me, and as soon as I heard it, I was certain that this is a narrative I want to be a part of. It got me thinking about the world we are living in and how women need to help other women. It is strong, it is impactful and it gives you the chills. The part that stayed with me the most was most definitely the amazing women who worked on the project, and without revealing much, I’d have to say the ending. Devi really is a film and a subject that stayed with me for days even after we wrapped up the shoot on it.”
“The script is moving and layered. I could actually see it unfolding before my eyes as I read it. I was fascinated with the depth of each character, their interactions, and the space where the story takes place. And I chose to be a part of it because it makes a strong comment on one of the most horrific crimes committed against women till date,” senior actor Neena Kulkarni concluded.