Remember Neetu Chandra? The Traffic Signal actress is completely away from the limelight

Updated: 20 June, 2020 10:08 IST | Nikita Wagh
  • Neetu Chandra

    Born on June 20, 1984, in Patna, Bihar, Neetu Chandra started modelling, before entering Bollywood. Neetu started her career in Bollywood with the Priyadarshan movie Garam Masala. She then featured in films like Traffic Signal, Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! and Rann, and worked with filmmakers like Ram Gopal Varma, Madhur Bhandarkar and Dibakar Banerjee, to name a few. (All photos/Neetu Chandra's official Instagram account)

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Very few know that Neetu Chandra holds two Dan black belts in Taekwondo and represented India in the 1997 World Taekwondo Championships in Hong Kong.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    In the last few years, she has been out of limelight Neetu Chandra's last Hindi film was Kucch Luv Jaisaa, that released in 2011. Asked what went wrong in her career, she says there are not many offers that came her way and in her personal life, she went through a tough time. 

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  • Neetu Chandra

    "I lost my father in 2009. He was suffering from cancer. So in a way, I was also focusing on my family. I have a production house and one of our productions 'Mithila Makhaan' even won a National Award. I have done a Greek film. So yes, I am working towards quality stuff, but unfortunately, not a lot of offers came my way the way I wanted it to be," she said.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Neetu Chandra further added, "I surely deserve to be in a Shah Rukh Khan- or a Salman Khan-starrer film. But my talent has not been utilised in the cinema properly. Since I do not come from a film family and have no Godfather, of course, my journey is slow but steady."

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Sharing fond memories of her film Traffic Signal, which starred Kunal Kemmue, Neetu took to Instagram to write, "My memories of National Award-winning film Traffic Signal. I was new in the industry, this was my second film after Garam Masala and I must say I got to learn so much. I literally sat on the footpath next to the Airplane Park in Bandra and made friends with the girls selling clothes there, started selling their clothes in their look while my mother would sit far in the car keeping an eye on me and fuming for 4-5 hours every day for some 10plus days but I learnt a lifetime, I am glad I choose to learn that way because no other workshop could have taught me that feeling. [sic]"

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Neetu Chandra has done a lot of Tamil and Telugu films. In fact, she has appeared in over 15 films down south, so far. Neetu feels the Bollywood world is under a wrong impression that she has shifted to the south Indian film industry.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    "I have done some Tamil films and people started thinking that I have settled in the south. It is wrong. I know visibility matters in today's time, especially the way the business of cinema is changing. Earlier, I had no team to present me, to make my work visible to the film fraternity. Thankfully, now I have one. I am open to work with any filmmaker, anywhere - be it Bollywood or Hollywood. I just hope the offers come my way," said the actress, whose mother tongue is Bhojpuri.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Neetu Chandra also tried her hands at production. In 2011, she produced Deswa - Bhojpuri film - which was directed by her brother Nitin Chandra. The film went to eight international film festivals. It was the first Bhojpuri film to be selected in Indian Paranoma in 50 years in Goa.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    "I produced that film, but trust me guys there is no market for that film. I have not been able to release it because for Bhojpuri it becomes a high class and for Hindi, it is very low budget," Neetu Chandra said.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Neetu Chandra, however, said her production house will continue making Hindi films based out of Bihar until a market is created for good Bhojpuri cinema. 

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  • Neetu Chandra

    "Bhojpuri is my mother tongue. I am proud of it. I wanted to change the face of Bhojpuri cinema because I can't connect (with it). I don't think I can produce another Bhojpuri film till the time we create a market there, but my production house is making Hindi films where the stories are going to be from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar," said Neetu.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    In 2013, Neetu Chandra made her stage debut with the theatrical adaptation of 'Umrao Jaan'. She had once revealed that not too many actors show interest in theatre because they cannot make a living out of it.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Talking about theatre, Neetu Chandra said, "I think money has overshadowed theatre in our country. Not just theatre but a lot of professions for that matter because we view everything from a commercial perspective. You can be in theatre out of passion, but can't make a living out of it because the cinema pays much more."

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Neetu Chandra says theatre expects actors to step out of their comfort zone. "We don't have many film actors in theatre because they are used to a certain kind of an affluent lifestyle. Theatre also requires a lot of hard work and time. It requires one to come out of his or her comfort zone. So are we ready to do it and what cost? I was paid Rs.500 each show and Rs.1,000 for a houseful show of 'Umrao Jaan'. I didn't mind because I have done 18 films and money hasn't been a problem... I'm happy doing theatre," she added.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    In 2016, Neetu Chandra was part of the UN initiative 'Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up For Gender Equality' at an event held in New York. The actress-producer discussed several issues related to women's rights at the UN Women headquarters. In fact, after sharing the stage with representatives from across the globe, Neetu was keen to play a new role as a women's rights activist.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Neetu Chandra seeks inspiration from actors Freida Pinto and Priyanka Chopra, who have carved a niche in international platforms. Freida earned fame with Oscar-winning movie Slumdog Millionaire, while Priyanka Chopra has established a good place as an actor internationally.

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Talking about Neetu Chandra's hobbies, the actress said, "I gave a lot of time to my Kathak training in the past couple of years. Dance is a very spiritual thing for me. Plus, I practise my martial arts. It is very important to have a life beyond films to stay in perspective."

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  • Neetu Chandra

    Here's wishing a very happy birthday to Neetu Chandra!

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About The Gallery

It's actress Neetu Chandra's birthday on June 20. The actress has been staying away from the limelight for quite some time now. As she turns a year older, we take a look at the actress' journey so far!

First Published: 20 June, 2019 09:00 IST