'My mother is my pillar of strength'

'My mother is my pillar of strength'

Assamese filmmaker Bobby Sarma Baruah is among the few women directors who have portrayed sensitive subjects like HIV-AIDS and women’s empowerment with elan. Her debut feature ‘Adomya’ explores these issues without taking away the cinematic experience.

Bobby’s daughter Sulakhyana is an actor and began her career in her mother’s first film. The duo, who were present at the Biffes, threw light on their work.

Bobby always knew that she wanted to become a filmmaker and it was in 2006, that she decided to plunge into films full time. “I like to explore realistic themes and want to showcase the tradition, culture and way of life of the people of Assam through my films. I don’t shy away from exploring sensitive issues because I feel films are the best medium to sensitise people on these issues,” says Bobby.

Sulakhyana decided to venture into acting after watching her mother work. “My mother is my pillar of strength and I don’t think I would have thought of a career in acting without her guidance. It’s not easy to pursue a career of your choice without support from your parents,” says Sulakhyana. She is of the view that actors need to experiment with all kinds of roles. “I don’t want to restrict myself to a particular kind of genre. I am here to learn and I want to make the best use the time and opportunities that come my way,” adds Sulakhyana.         

There are challenges in every profession, believes Bobby, but she says filmmaking teaches you how to tide over the worst moments. “There have been times when I had to direct, manage the production, market the film and look into the casting. It’s a lot of work but one is satisfied and happy when the product is appreciated,” says Bobby.  

Sulakhyana wishes to assist her mother after completing her education. “I’ve grown up watching my mother wield the camera and that’s something I want to try someday. It is important to have a strong support system and I have that in my mother. I would like to become familiar with every aspect of filmmaking and not restrict myself to acting,” shares Sulakhyana.

Assam has no dearth of talented directors and actors but they lack support from the government, points out Bobby. 

As artistes, Bobby and Sulakhyana hope that they would get support and encouragement for films made in the NorthEast. “Actors from Assam lack a proper platform to showcase their talent. Film festivals are a good way of popularising films from our side of the country,” says Sulakhyana.

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