Tisca Chopra: In QISSA my character ages from 28 to 50

By Rachana Sheth, Glamsham Editorial

Doing sensible cinema and unconventional & meaningful roles is what Bollywood actress Tisca Chopra known for. She has been part of some cream projects in the past like TAARE ZAMEEN PAR, FIRAAQ, DIL TOH BACCHA HAI JI, 10 ML LOVE, etc. And now the actress is gearing up for yet another unconventional movie QISSA, an Indo-European venture which is a five country co-production.

QISSA has been selected in the Contemporary World Cinema section at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. And Tisca is mighty excited about it. ''It's a very big honour for us. I really hope the film is well-received by Toronto audience. There are some good vibes around the film,'' says Tisca.

QISSA is co-produced by Germany's Heimatfilm, NFDC India (National Film Development Corporation of India), with Dutch production house Augustus Film, France's Cine-Sud. Producers on the film include Heimatfilm's Johannes Rexin (Heimatfilm), Nina Lath Gupta (NFDC), Bero Beyer (Augustus Film) and Thierry Lenouvel (Cinesud Promotion).

It is a period film set in 1947 and talks about a Sikh couple played by Tisca Chopra and Irrfan and their life after country's partition. However, for Tisca the film's subject was not alien and the role what she is playing in the film was very much relatable. How? Well, Tisca has grown up on the stories of partition that her ancestors & grandparents, who hailed from Pakistan, narrated to her.

Says Tisca, ''I have grown up hearing the stories of partition from my ancestors & grandparents, who come from Pakistan. So even while shooting on Wagah border or any other location, I could recollect all those stories. I always felt as if I am portraying my nani or dadi's life on the screen. It was as if reliving their lives once again. And because of that I didn't need much of a preparation. I could well emotionally... in fact beautifully connect with it.''

Ask her if it's an intense role and Tisca says, ''I would not label it as an intense role. But it was challenging enough. It is a story which ranges from different time periods. In QISSA my character ages from 28 to 50.''

When debutant director Anup Singh came to her with the film's script, Tisca felt Anup has composed a poem. ''Yes it's true when Anup Singh came to me I felt he was composing a poem. I just thought QISSA is a painting in motion or a poem.''

Nevertheless, Tisca spent a year behind reading the script. She says, ''I spent a year behind this project and I at once knew what a genius mind Anup is. He is one of the finest filmmakers I have come across,'' says Tisca on a parting note.


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