Students gathered in New York Film Academy’s Los Angeles theater to screen the hit Bollywood film Tara: The Journey of Love and Passion and participate in a Q&A with the movie’s star, Rekha Rana—who is currently studying acting at the New York Film Academy—and director/producer Kumar Raj. The discussion was moderated by NYFA LA’s Events Manager and directing instructor Robert Cosnahan.
Tara: The Journey of Love and Passion is an epic saga about an illiterate Indian gypsy woman, brewing liquor illegally to survive, who after being accused of adultery by her husband when she becomes pregnant, is faced with a choice — be a victim of patriarchal society or take her life into her own hands. The film has a strong, positive, and refreshing message of female empowerment. The movie paints a gut-wrenching portrait of life’s hardships, especially for women, in the poorest areas of Indian. The film played for an astounding 52 weeks in a 650 seat theater in India and has received over 40 awards worldwide in many International Film Festivals.
Rekha Rana holds nothing back in her portrayal of Tara, a woman forced to deal with life’s most trying of circumstances. It’s impossible to not feel her anguish as despair thunders through her, or to feel hope when her radiant smile lights up the screen. She was rewarded recently for her outstanding performance in Tara when she received the Best Actress award at San Francisco’s Festival of Globe Film Festival.
Rekha gave alot of praise for NYFA’s acting program, stating that it has improved her performance skills immensely. She can’t wait to apply what she’s learned here in future Bollywood and U.S. films. Rekha said that NYFA is “one of the best things that’s ever happened to me.”
After the event, director/producer Kumar Raj graciously donated a copy of Tara to NYFA’s library. Rekha is currently working on her upcoming film Yahan Ameena Bikti Hai also produced and directed by Kumar Raj.
Rekha Rana is a Bollywood actress, theater artist, and winner of the Miss Delhi, Photogenic Face and Beautiful Smile title in 2007. She is the brand ambassador for a South African NGO, ‘Star NGO,’ and the ‘Save Our Women’ Campaign.’ Her first movie, Ab Hoga Dharna Unlimited, which is inspired by Anna Hazare’s Dharna, was released on April 13th, 2012. Rekha won the Best Actress Award at the Singapore Film Festival in 2010 for her performance in a short film called Take Care. She has performed over 200 stage shows worldwide. As she is interested in humanity work, she has joined women’s helmet promotion, started on March 8th, 2010, at International Women’s Day to make awareness among women wearing helmets.
Kumar Raj started his career in the shipping industry and is an arbitrator in the India and London Council of Arbitration. He was inspired to begin working in the Indian Film Industry (also known as Bollywood) 6 years ago because his intense passion and love for cinema. In these 6 years, he has made four films, his latest being Tara.
We sincerely thank Rekha Rana and Kumar Raj for screening their wonderful film at the New York Film Academy and wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors!