Thursday, July 25, 2024

Jhankudi actor Manasi Parekh: Things are changing for regional cinemas now

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Actor Manasi Parekh, who recently lent her voice to the song Jhamkudi in her latest Gujarati film of the same name, reflects on the evolving landscape of regional cinema, highlighting the increasing demand for quality content across language barriers. Talking exclusively to us, the 37-year-old opens up about the shift in perception towards regional cinemas, particularly Gujarati cinema, noting its rising popularity and the audience’s appetite for diverse narratives.

Manasi Parekh was last seen in Jhamkudi

“We got so many shows for Jhamkudi every day in Bombay, which is quite unheard of generally. There is an audience out there wanting to watch good quality content, no matter what the language. Regional cinemas, especially Gujarati, is on the rise,” Parekh says.

Speaking about the now-viral song that listeners from various backgrounds are lapping up, Parekh tells us it was created with the intention of breaking away from the stereotypes Gujarati music is often associated with. “We were very clear that we wanted to create fresh sound in Gujarati because people only associate certain specific sounds with Gujarati music. We aimed to infuse a very contemporary and hip hop feel into this song,” she says while adding “things are changing for regional cinemas now.

Also Read: Manasi Parekh: Marriage and motherhood have added value to my performances

Parekh acknowledges the distinct preferences of Gujarati audiences and speaks of their love for humour and family-oriented entertainment. “Gujarati audiences love to see anything you give them with humour,” she explains adding, “they love to be engaged in comedy and entertainment, preferring to watch films with the whole family.”

Drawing on her experiences across different film industries Hindi, Gujarati and Tamil, Parekh discusses her commitment to promote Gujarati language and culture through her work.

Despite her success in Hindi cinema, including notable roles like in the 2019-film Uri: The Surgical Strike, she remains dedicated to creating meaningful content in Gujarati.

“I did not switch to Gujarati. After Uri, I have done a Hindi film and I hope it will see the light of the day soon. I have done a Hindi web series as well,” Parekh clarifies, adding, “However, being Gujarati myself, I saw the potential and audience demand for Gujarati content. My husband and I have performed across the world for Gujarati audiences, and there is a genuine love for Gujarati culture everywhere, people love Gujarati music. And so that I thought they would also like to watch more Gujarati films and felt we should do something and create more content in this language.”

Ask if there were less opportunities in the Bollywood industry, Parekh expresses her proactive approach to her career, preferring to create opportunities rather than waiting for them to come. “It’s important to take power in your own hands. You have to be open to everything in life. I am always hungry for good work that reaches out to people, whether it’s in Hindi, Gujarati, or Marathi,” she asserts.



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