6 Female Filmmakers In Bollywood Who Are Rockstar Storytellers

Shubanka Sridhar , 08 Mar 2020
Zoya Akhtar, Shonali Bose and Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari (Source: Instagram | @shonalibose_, @ashwinyiyertiwari)
Zoya Akhtar, Shonali Bose and Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari (Source: Instagram | @shonalibose_, @ashwinyiyertiwari)

In the 21st Century, speaking about how women venturing into filmmaking is a powerful move seems passé to me. We women are capable of doing anything we set our sights on, amirite? In today’s time, there are some amazing ladies out there who are making some rather moving and impactful cinema and we are all for it! From Meghna Gulzar‘s Chhapaak to Zoya Akhtar‘s Gully Boy, these are the films that are winning praises all over. Not just these films, but there are many others that have been told by women, through their lens, that are rather note-worthy.

Here are our top 7 filmmakers who are our favourites:

  1. Zoya Akhtar

When it comes to making cinema that is bound to entertain you while giving you some room to ponder, there can be no one better than Zoya Akhtar. And when it comes to her female characters, she’s not one to glorify them, but rather gives them a voice like no other. Be it Laila in Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara or Farah from Dil Dhadakne Do, they are very normal and independent women with their own voices.

    2. Meghna Gulzar

Meghna has not one but two brilliant stories about the female power to her credit. Alia Bhatt‘s Raazi was a story about a simple girl who becomes a hero, but is also scared, guilty and vulnerable in her journey. Chhapaak, on the other hand shows a woman’s journey in fighting for her voice and winning herself back after being completely crushed.

     3. Shonali Bose

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Today the Sky was Radiant and so was I as I walked on the Bluffs – my fav place in all of LA. A beautiful light shone down from the sky – Aisha’s light. For today was her Deathday. And she is shining more than ever. I never met Aisha but I am in her skin and know her intimately. I know her last day on Earth in excruciating detail and I captured it in our film and was overjoyed that her parents and her brother loved what I did. It’s such a personal intimate thing – your experience of a loved ones death. I heard their experiences and owned them and recreated them. I am honored to be her conduit to tell the world her story. She, Ishan and I see the bliss and beauty in Death. We see the Light and not the Darkness. And we hope you’ll see it too through our eyes with our film. Love you Aishi. Shine on. #theskyispink #theskyisradiant #aishachaudharyrockstar #notafraidofdeath

A post shared by Shonali Bose (@shonalibose_) on

The Sky Is Pink was a movie about love and loss, and it was also Shonali’s tribute to a mother. How beautifully she had depicted the roller-coaster of emotions that they sail through! Priyanka Chopra definitely won our hearts with her amazing performance as the overtly protective and caring mother, Moose!

     4. Shelly Chopra Dhar

It’s not a common idea to depict same-sex relationships among women in mainstream Hindi cinema, and Shelly Chopra Dhar did that beautifully in Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga. Starring real life father-daughter duo — Anil Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor, this film handled the subject with so much care and love.

      5. Alankrita Srivastava

A story about women and their sexual needs and desires isn’t something we see everyday in Bollywood. Lipstick Under My Burkha was the answer to that. Alankrita points out the sexism and inequality when it comes to men and women’s sexual lives and highlights so many important issues that crop up due to that. These are definitely the kind of stories we need to see more of in our cinema, right?

      6. Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari

Ashwini has a knack of bringing us stories that are so lived in and relatable. Be it the Mishra family in Bareilly Ki Barfi, the super sweet mother-daughter relationship in Nil Battey Sannata, or the understanding husband-wife relationship in Panga, we can’t help but adore them!

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