Here Is Everything That Makes The Gully Boy Director Zoya Akhtar Stand Out

Gully Boy Director Zoya Akhtar

Zoya Akhtar is an Indian director and screenwriter. Today, October 14, 2020 the director turns 58. Over a period of time, she has created a niche for herself in Bollywood. Her films speak about social issues and she has been able to raise pertinent questions through her creative work. She is a recipient of several awards including three Filmfare Awards. Akhtar was recently in news for signing the open letter, along with several other people from the industry, to the Indian news media condemning their coverage of the Rhea Chakraborty case.

On her birthday, she posted on Instagram,” Early Bird Gets The Kiss ❤️ Thank You @ashishsawthemoon#birthdayweek #chocolatecake#happygirl”


Also Read:- Zoya Akhtar’s ‘Gully Boy’ Wins Best Asian Film Award At BIFAN

Her brother  Farhan Akhtar wished her saying, “Happy birthday to someone who I know is always watching over me.”


Zoya Akhtar’s Career

Zoya started her career as a co-director of a music video called “Price of Bullets” for a rock band called “Pentagram.” She worked as a casting director for movies like Dil Chahta Hai (2001). She was also an assistant director for Dil Chahta Hai and Lakshya (2004).

The 58-year-old director made her directional debut with the movie Luck By Chance (2009) which starred her brother Farhan Akhtar and Konkona Sen Sharma.

In 2011, she directed Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, which starred Hrithik Roshan, Farhan Akhtar, Abhay Deol, Katrina Kaif and Kalki Koechlin. It became a huge commercial success and she received the Filmfare Award for Best Director, IIFA Award for Best Director and Zee Cine Award for Best Director for “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara”. 

Also Read :-  Zoya Akhtar Invited To Be Member of Oscar Academy In Special Honour

In the year 2013, along with Anurag Kashyap, Dibakar Banerjee and Karan Johar, she worked on Bombay Talkies. The movie was a celebration of 100 years of cinema.

She directed Dil Dhadakne Do in 2015. The film was about a dysfunctional Punjabi family starring Anil Kapoor as an egotistical male chauvinist industrialist, Shefali Shah as the socialite wife who isn’t happy in her marriage, Priyanka Chopra as the daughter of the couple, Ranveer Singh as the son of the couple, Farhan Akhtar as the love interest of Priyanka Chopra and Anushka Sharma appeared against Ranveer Singh.

In the year 2018, she again teamed up with Anurag Kashyap, Dibakar Banerjee and Karan Johar for Lust Stories,  for Netflix. The movie was nominated for “International Emmy Award for Best TV Movie.”

Also Read :- Watch: Zoya Akhtar says film industry very much part of our patriarchal society

Zoya directed Gully Boy in 2019 starring Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt, loosely based on the life of Mumbai rapper Naezy. The film received the Best Asian Film award at Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival (BIFAN). She was also bestowed with the NETPAC Best Asian Film this year for this in 2019.

Zoya along with Reema Kagti worked on a web series for Amazon Prime called Made in Heaven, starring Sobhita Dhulipala, Arjun Mathur and Kalki Koechlin. The series highlights the outrageous pressure we put on women to adhere to the idea of a demure Indian bride. And also highlights the life of  an openly gay man in modern India, how he is challenged and violated by the society’s harrowingly conservative mindset.

Later in 2020, she is directing a segment of Ghost Stories, a Netflix Original horror anthology film, consisting of 4 short film segments.

In an interview with SheThePeople’s founder Shaili Chopra while speaking about the film industry she said, “Firstly we have to understand a thing about the industry, it’s part of this society. It belongs to the same patriarchal society we belong to and are discussing right now. Within that when you are there and you are a creator, the point is it’s a business. So when producers are putting something out there, they want a return on investment. So at the start we are already dealing with a lot of people who are dealing with popular sensibility, which is patriarchy. Within that you have artists that will push the envelope. Both women and men who know how to project women.”

Watch the full interview here:

Also Read :- How Zoya Akhtar’s Filmography Has Come Full Circle With ‘Gully Boy’

Khushi Gupta is an intern with SheThePeople.TV