Deepti Naval

Deepti Naval (born 3 February 1952) is an Indian-born American actress, director, and writer, predominantly active in Hindi cinema.[1]

Deepti Naval
Deepti Naval in 2015.jpg
Naval in 2015
Born (1952-02-03) 3 February 1952 (age 70)
Other namesDipti Naval
Alma materHunter College, New York City
  • Actress
  • director
  • writer
Years active1978–2020
(m. 1985; div. 2002)

Her major contribution has been in the area of art cinema, winning critical acclaim for her sensitive and 'close to life' characters that emphasized the changing roles of women in India.

Early lifeEdit

Naval was born on 3 February 1952[2] in Amritsar, East Punjab, India, but moved to New York City when her father got a teaching job at City University of New York. She studied fine arts at Hunter College.[3]

Acting careerEdit

Naval made her debut in 1978 with Shyam Benegal's film Junoon. Two years later, she played a lead role in Ek Baar Phir.[3] Alongside Smita Patil and Shabana Azmi, she became an actress in 1980s Parallel Cinema, playing roles in films like Kamla (1984) or Ankahee (1985).[4]

Farooq Sheikh, Deepti Naval and Rakesh Bedi at the special screening of Chashme Buddoor (2013)

Starting with Chashme Buddoor in 1981, she was often cast with Farooque Shaikh and they became an iconic on-screen couple of the early 1980s, with films such as Chashme Buddoor, Saath Saath, Kissi Se Na Kehna, Katha, Rang Birangi and Faasle. Three decades later, they reunited in Tell Me O Kkhuda (2011). Their last film together was Listen... Amaya which was released in 2013, the year Shaikh died.[5]

While she was very prolific in the 1980s, her career slowed down in the 1990s and she explored other art forms.[4] She came back in the 2000s with social dramas like Bawandar and Firaaq, and won Best Actress awards in several international film festivals for her roles in Leela (2002), Memories in March (2010) and Listen... Amaya (2013).[6][7][8] She was also recognized as the 2007 Tribute Honoree of the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles.[9]

Mostly present in Hindi cinema, Naval also acted in other Indian languages, as with Marhi Da Deeva and Mane, which respectively won the award for Best Feature Film in Punjabi and Best Feature Film in Kannada at the 1990 National Film Awards ceremony.[10] She was to make her debut in a Bengali movie under director Sanjoy Nag but the film - Memories in March - was eventually shot in English.[11]

Naval has been active on TV with a few telefilms and serials such as Sauda (1992), Tanaav (1994) or Muqammal (2003). She came back in 2011 with the daily soap opera Mukti Bandhan on Colors.[12] She made her theater debut in 2015 with the poetic stage show Ek Mulaqaat in which she played the celebrated Punjabi writer Amrita Pritam.[13]

In 2019, Naval appeared in an episode of Made in Heaven, a web series on Amazon Prime directed by Zoya Akhtar.

Other workEdit

Naval made her directorial debut with Do Paise Ki Dhoop, Chaar Aane Ki Baarish starring Manisha Koirala and Rajit Kapoor. The film won the Best Screenplay Award at the 2009 New York Indian Film Festival[14] which released on Netflix in 2019.[15] She also wrote and directed Thoda Sa Aasmaan, a TV serial centred around strong female characters, and produced a travel show, The Path Less Travelled.[3]

Her first selection of poems in Hindi, Lamha Lamha was published in 1983. In 2004, MapinLit published a new collection called Black Wind and Other Poems.[3] Naval is also the author of a collection of short stories, The Mad Tibetan, published in 2011.[16]

Naval is also a painter and photographer with several exhibitions to her credit. Her works as a painter include the controversial Pregnant Nun.[17] She also runs the Vinod Pandit Charitable Trust, set up in memory of her late companion, for the education of the girl child.[18]

Personal lifeEdit

Naval was married to the filmmaker Prakash Jha and the two have an adopted daughter, Disha Jha.[17] Naval was later in a relationship with the late Vinod Pandit, the nephew of Pandit Jasraj.[19] As of 2010, she is an American citizen.[20]

She is also interested in painting and photography.




Year Title Role Notes
1978 Junoon Rashid's wife
1979 Jallian Wala Bagh
1980 Hum Paanch Lajiya
1980 Ek Baar Phir Kalpana Kumar
1981 Chashme Buddoor Neha Rajan
1981 Chirutha
1982 Angoor Tanu
1982 Saath Saath Geetanjali Gupta 'Geeta'
1982 Shriman Shrimati Veena
1983 Rang Birangi Anita Sood
1983 Ek Baar Chale Aao Gulab D. Dayal
1983 Katha Sandhya Sabnis
1983 Kissi Se Na Kehna Dr. Ramola Sharma
1984 Mohan Joshi Hazir Ho!
1984 Kanoon Kya Karega Mrs. Anju Gautam Mehra
1984 Kamla Kamla
1984 Hip Hip Hurray
1984 Yeh Ishq Nahin Aasaan Sahira H. Khan/Sahira S. Salim
1984 Wanted: Dead or Alive Angela
1984 Andhi Gali
1985 Damul
1985 Faasle Sheetal
1985 Telephone
1985 Holi Professor Sehgal
1985 Ankahee Indu Agnihotri
1985 Aurat Pair Ki Juti Nahin Hai
1986 Aashiana
1986 Begaana Asha Mathur/Asha V. Kumar
1986 Nasihat
1987 Meraa Suhaag Special appearance[21]
1987 Mirch Masala Saraswati, Mukhiya's wife
1988 Abhishapt
1988 Shoorveer Nanda (Shankar's Wife)
1988 Main Zinda Hoon Bina Tiwari
1989 Didi Didi Directed by Tapan Sinha
1989 Marhi Da Deeva Bhan Kaur/Bhani Punjabi film
1989 Jism Ka Rishta
1990 Ghar Ho To Aisa Sharda V. Kumar
1991 Mane Geeta Kannada film
1991 Ek Ghar
1991 Saudagar Aarti
1992 Current Sita
1992 Yalgaar Sunita (Deepak's wife)
1994 Bollywood
1994 Mr. Azaad Rajlaxmi
1995 Dushmani: A Violent Love Story Rama Oberoi
1995 Jai Vikraanta Harnam's Wife
1995 Guddu Kavita Bahadur
1996 Sautela Bhai Saraswati
1998 Aie Sangharsha
1999 Kabhi Pass Kabhi Fail
2000 Bawandar Shobha Devi
2002 Leela Chaitali Winner – Best Supporting Actress Award at the 2003 Karachi Film Festival[6]
2002 Shakti - The Power Shekhar's mother
2003 Freaky Chakra Ms. Thomas
2004 Anahat Mahattarika Marathi film
2006 Yatra Smita D. Joglekar/Sharda
2008 Firaaq Arati
2011 Tell Me O Kkhuda Mrs. R. Kapoor
2010 Memories in March Arati S. Mishra Winner – Best Actress Award at the 2012 ImagineIndia Film Festival (Spain)[7]
2011 Trapped in Tradition: Rivaaz Paro
2011 Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara Rahila Qureshi
2011 Bhindi Baazaar Inc. Bano
2013 Mahabharat Kunti voice role
2013 B.A. Pass Mrs. Suhasini Special appearance[22]
2013 Aurangzeb Mrs. Ravikant Phogat
2013 Inkaar Mrs. Kamdhar Nominated – Apsara Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role
2013 Listen... Amaya Leela Winner – Best Actress Award at the 2013 New York Indian Film Festival[8]
2014 Yaariyan Girls hostel warden [23]
2014 Bang Bang! Jai and Viren's mother (Shikka Nanda
2015 NH10 Ammaji
2015 Heartless Mother of the protagonist
2015 Tevar Pintoo's mother
2016 Lion Saroj Sood [24]


Year Show Role Notes
1985 Apna Jahan Shanti A. Sahani Television film
1991-1992 Kahkashan
1992 Sauda
1994 Tanaav Mrs Malik
2003–2004 Muqammal Sumeesha
2011 Mukti Bandhan Parimeeta
2016 Meri Awaaz Hi Pehchaan Hai Kalyani Gaikwad
2017 The Boy with the Topknot Sathnam's Mother Television film
2019 Made in Heaven Gayatri Mathur Guest
2020 Pawan & Pooja Pooja Kalra
Criminal Justice: Behind Closed Doors Vijaya 'Vijji' Chandra


  1. ^ "Exclusive! Deepti Naval: Character actors are now the big stars - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  2. ^ "Happy B'day Deepti Naval; Lesser known facts about the Chashme Buddoor actress". OrissaPOST. 3 February 2020. Retrieved 22 July 2021.[better source needed]
  3. ^ a b c d "Not just a pretty face". The Telegraph (India). 12 December 2004. Retrieved 23 July 2021.
  4. ^ a b "The art of being Deepti Naval". 8 February 2001. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 24 October 2015.
  5. ^ "Deepti Naval: Farooque Shaikh was not sick at all - Movies". 28 December 2013. Archived from the original on 21 October 2014. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  6. ^ a b c "Letter From Pakistan- December 2003 – January 2004". January 2004. Archived from the original on 28 September 2018. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  7. ^ a b "ImagineIndia 2012 Awards". Archived from the original on 3 February 2016. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  8. ^ a b c "Winners". Archived from the original on 1 March 2015. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  9. ^ "IFFLA Pays Tribute to Deepti Naval". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  10. ^ "37th National Film Awards" (PDF). Directorate of Film Festivals. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2 October 2013. Retrieved 23 October 2015.
  11. ^ "A journey of discovery". 3 April 2011. Archived from the original on 12 October 2020. Retrieved 23 October 2015.
  12. ^ "Deepti Naval back on TV". 6 June 2011. Archived from the original on 4 February 2019. Retrieved 23 October 2015.
  13. ^ "When Sahir visited Amrita on a cold, winter night". 1 October 2015. Archived from the original on 3 February 2016. Retrieved 23 October 2015.
  14. ^ "Awards". Archived from the original on 17 July 2014. Retrieved 21 October 2015. Two Paise for Sunshine, Four Annas for Rain by Deepti Naval
  15. ^ "Words of Love". 16 May 2015. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  16. ^ "Amitabh Bachchan launches Deepti Naval's book 'The Mad Tibetan'". 31 October 2011. Archived from the original on 3 February 2016. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  17. ^ a b "Lesser known facts about Deepti Naval". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 2 May 2015. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  18. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 8 March 2016. Retrieved 1 October 2015.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  19. ^ "Movies: 'I was keen to come back'". 24 August 2002. Archived from the original on 15 August 2017. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  20. ^ Hafeez, Mateen (30 August 2010). "Working in Bollywood for years, but shy of citizenship?". The Times of India. Retrieved 3 April 2019.
  21. ^ According to the film's opening credits.
  22. ^ "Deepti Naval makes friendly appearance in 'BA Pass'". 18 June 2013. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  23. ^ "Yaariyan movie review". Archived from the original on 17 January 2016. Retrieved 18 January 2014.
  24. ^ "Exclusive: Dev Patel, Priyanka Bose and Deepti Naval Talk 'Lion' At NY Premiere - The Knockturnal". The Knockturnal. 21 November 2016. Archived from the original on 7 January 2018. Retrieved 7 January 2018.

External linksEdit