"Knowing Parvin Dabas is like opening up a Russian doll,” says filmmaker Dibakar Banerjee. And he is bang on.
A Delhi boy, Dabas landed modelling assignments, which paved the way for his acting debut in Mira Nair’s Monsoon Wedding (2001). He has had many memorable roles, including that of Cherry aka Chiraunji Lal Khosla in Banerjee’s National Award-winning film Khosla Ka Ghosla.
In the recent Mirror Game, a psychological thriller directed by Vijit Sharma, Dabas was seen as Jay, a professor of psychiatric genetics, who has a multi-layered personality. “I found the character engrossing, engaging and unpredictable. It’s always interesting to work with new directors who bring fresh ideas, and Vijit is one of them,” he says.
The actor will also be seen in Remy Kohli’s political thriller 'Kuldip Patwal: I Didn’t Do It!' and Madhur Bhandarkar’s Indu Sarkar, based on the Emergency. In Indu Sarkar, Dabas plays an intelligence officer and a chief minister in 'Kuldip Patwal: I Didn’t Do It!.'.
His other releases include short films Mumbai Mist directed by Bhandarkar, and My Sun Sets to 'Rise Again' by New York-based Dana Offenbach. Mumbai Mist was screened at the BRICS Film Festival on June 22.
There’s more to Dabas than meets the eye. He is well-versed, well-read, well-travelled and opinionated. He leaves you in splits with his Jat sense of humour. A sports lover, he hosts MMA India Show on mixed martial arts.
“I’m a self-taught artist, and the only training that I’ve had is a two-day course in underwater photography,” he says on being click-savvy. A trained scuba diver, he has to his credit the first underwater fashion shoot in India for Verve magazine.
Not so long ago, he was a celebrity supporter of the free trade cotton movement in the country and had exhibited a special photographic series based on the cotton farmers of Kutch in Gujarat at the Kala Ghoda Festival 2010.
For the uninitiated, Dabas’ directorial venture Sahi Dhande Galat Bande won the Bronze Palm Award at the 2011 Mexico International Film Festival and Silver Remi Award at the Worldfest Houston.