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Kiran Rao Reflects on Financial Hardships During Early Career

Kiran Rao Reflects on Financial Hardships During Early Career

Before gaining recognition as a successful filmmaker, Kiran Rao navigated through demanding days as an assistant director, working on notable projects like the critically acclaimed and Oscar-nominated film “Lagaan.” In a candid discussion on the podcast “Cyrus Says,” Rao opened up about the challenges she faced during her initial days in Mumbai.

Rao highlighted the financial pressures she encountered, describing herself as a “gig worker” who took on various jobs to make ends meet. She shared, “I’d take on jobs as they came, working as long as they paid, then I’d scramble to find the next, all while stressing about whether my savings would last and if I could cover my rent.”

Discussing the financial aspects of her work, Rao mentioned that feature films like “Lagaan” did not provide substantial financial rewards. It was the advertising projects that helped her sustain her life in Mumbai. She recalled how advertising gigs enabled her to afford essential expenses like computers and even her first car, which she bought from her father for ₹1 lakh.

Rao also shed light on the demanding nature of her role as an assistant director on “Lagaan.” She described her experience as a “minion” with no creative control, managing logistical challenges, and enduring long hours starting from 4:30 am. The intense environment on set, coupled with the pressure of coordinating shoots, made it a strenuous yet formative period in her career.

Despite the challenges, Kiran Rao’s perseverance paid off as she eventually made her directorial debut with “Dhobi Ghat” in 2010. After a hiatus of 14 years, her latest project “Laapataa Ladies” marked her directorial comeback, showcasing her growth and resilience in the industry.

Kiran Rao’s journey from struggling assistant director to accomplished filmmaker highlights the resilience and determination required to succeed in the competitive world of cinema. Her story serves as an inspiration for aspiring filmmakers, emphasizing the importance of perseverance, adaptability, and seizing opportunities to overcome challenges.

Sources By Agencies



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