Kalki Koechlin talks about watching her daughter grow


Kalki Koechlin, who gave birth in February, is presently writing a journal on parenting

For actor Kalki Koechlin, who became a mother to baby Sappho in February this year, just one month before lockdown, the last few months have caused mixed feelings.

“It has been a difficult time, not knowing what is going to happen and when work will start. But it has also been a blessing having Sappho in my life. I have had the chance to watch her grow and be around for all her milestones, whether it was her first sounds or her first food. I am grateful for having had this time, that she was here during this lockdown to keep me company.”

While many people have resumed work, Kalki says she has not yet gone back to shooting. However, last Saturday, she held a workshop for children as part of Uable’s online Creativity Festival.

“I have not gone back to work because I have a baby and it is not safe to take a baby to set. There is a lot more protocol (to be followed now): fewer people on set, everyone wearing masks and PPE kits and being tested before shooting. It is one thing to be careful in terms of hygiene. Mental care is also important. People are having to plan in advance so they do not waste time on set. That is a wonderful thing to see.”

On whether she sees more films releasing on OTT platforms and more actors moving to streaming, Kalki, who has acted in shows such as Sacred Games and Made in Heaven, says: “I would say that is the logical conclusion. The OTT platforms are demanding more content as people are watching a lot more because they are home more. I think actors are going to have to take their careers in that direction. But I have not given up on cinemas; I do hope that eventually they will open as well as stage theatres. There is a lot for us to learn from this lockdown: the idea of doing things in a different way, even filming and shooting in a much more careful way and more planning.”

While Kalki has written plays, she says, “I don’t feel like I’m qualified enough to write scripts; I hope I get into it at some point. I’m good at writing short stories and hopefully it will develop at some point. I am actually writing something else at the moment, a journal on parenting because it has been such an experience. So, let us see where this writing journey goes.”

She stresses on the need for women scriptwriters. “It is important as only when women start telling their own stories will there be a balance in the storytelling and less of the male gaze. If you are writing about women, it is logical that you have women in the workshop. If you are writing about disability, you would have differently-abled people contributing to the script. I think it is necessary that whatever the subject of the film is, people who are involved in that subject write about it.”