People

Nia Dinata: Sunday is
family time

Film producer/director Nia Dinata is gearing up for the 12th Jakarta International Film Festival (JiFFest) with a documentary titled Working Girls. She may have a busy schedule for the entire week, but she makes family her top priority when it comes to spending her Sundays.

During my free time, I love to relax with my children and husband watching movies in a movie theater or just watching DVDs at home. No traveling, just at home. We only go out to watch a movie if we think the movie is good.

The best Sunday for me is relaxing at home with the kids by watching films and enjoying food that we cook together. We eat while chatting and lying in front of the television.

We also love to make breakfast together. My children will help me to make their favorite food. They like pancakes very much, but their happiest moments are when I make spaghetti aglio olio. They really love it. The yummy traditional Italian pasta has become a favorite food in our family.  

My children like swimming and also share the same hobby as me: watching movies. This is something I have been doing since I was a kid. I went to the movies very Sunday. That’s really my hobby.

Sometimes I cannot enjoy Sundays with my family because I’m shooting a film. That’s the only thing that can make me sacrifice my precious Sundays. I won’t go anywhere on those Sundays unless its related to the film.

I am also involved with school activities for my kids, especially when they are conducted on Sundays. After becoming a mother with two children, Gibran, 9, and Petrov, 14, I am more concerned about education.

When Petrov was still 11, he had to do community service from his school and teach students from a public school who had no access to good English-language education. I also got excited by the project and went with him to do the volunteer work, which was held every Sunday for a year.

After the first meeting, my son was confused on how to teach English to fifth-grade students who could not even tell time in English. I suggested that he play a movie for the students and hold a discussion.
To our surprise, the students had poor references on good films because they were only familiar with television soap operas.

I am sad to learn about the widening gap of access to good education in this country. People have to spend much money on the education of their children. What about children from poor families? They have a right to good education,

I am very worried about this. I don’t think the problem will be solved soon.

— As told to Indah Setiawati

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