Leena Yadav

  • Director, Writer, Screenplay, Editor

Jan 06, 1971  in Madhya Pradesh, India

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Best known for writing and directing the internationally acclaimed drama film Parched (2015), Leena Yadav is one of the most prominent women filmmakers in contemporary Indian cinema. She started out as an editor on television, before venturing into production and direction through shows like This Week That Year, Star Bestsellers (1999-00) and Dead End (2000). In 2005, Leena made her feature film directorial debut with the thriller Shabd, which starred Sanjay Dutt and Aishwarya Rai in the lead roles.

It was another five years before the director made her sophomore outing in Bollywood, with the thriller Teen Patti (2010). The film had an ensemble cast featuring Amitabh Bachchan, Ben Kingsley, R. Madhavan and Shraddha Kapoor, but proved to be a disappointment both critically and commercially.

In 2015, Leena wrote and directed the drama film Parched, which starred Tannishtha Chatterjee, Radhika Apte and Surveen Chawla in the lead roles. The acclaimed film, which currently holds a 90% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, followed the lives of a group of women in an oppressive patriarchal society and how they prevail against the odds. It was screened at several international film festivals, and won accolades at the Stockholm Film Festival and the Indian Film Festival in Stuttgart. In 2018, Leena helmed the comedy-drama Rajma Chawal, which starred Rishi Kapoor, Amyra Dastur and Anirudh Tanwar in central roles.