Kareena Kapoor credits Vidya Balan, Kangana Ranaut for promoting cause of pay parity

PTI, Feb 25, 2024, 1:10 PM IST

Mumbai: Bollywood star Kareena Kapoor Khan on Saturday credited leading female actors like Kangana Ranaut, Vidya Balan and Deepika Padukone for having made significant contributions to the improvement of women’s roles in cinema and remuneration in the Hindi film business. Kareena, known for films like “Jab We Met”, “Chameli”, “Udta Punjab”, “3 Idiots”, “Laal Singh Chaddha”, and “Jaane Jaan”, was speaking about how female actors have altered things in the movie industry, on Day 2 of ABP Ideas of India Summit 3.0.

“A lot of strong women have done a lot of strong parts in films. They have done films that have been loved by the audiences, by the masses, by the film people, by critics, and at the box office.

“So, whether it’s leading actresses like Kangana (Ranaut), Vidya (Balan), Deepika (Padukone) or myself, we’ve always tried to stand for roles that have risen above just being there in the film. So, all has changed a lot of dynamics on many levels, like demanding a certain role, a certain fee, or position,” the 43-year-old actress said.

It’s time to stop labelling movies as being either male- or female-centric, according to Kareena. She also cited the example of her upcoming release “Crew”, which also stars Tabu and Kriti Sanon, saying it should not be perceived as a film that is only focused on women.

“I would want people to go to cinemas whether they are watching a hero or heroine, where they are watching a film, a story, listening to songs, and all that. My film ‘Crew’, is releasing on March 29, it’s about three air hostesses, there’s Tabu, me and Kriti Sanon in it.

“I don’t want to look at it like, ‘Oh it’s a female centric film’. It’s a film about people. What is the problem, it’s a film, go watch it, enjoy it, love it. Why are you giving it names? It’s a film,” Kareena said.

On the stereotype surrounding a heroine’s age, Kareena remarked that it is just a number and thanked the audience for seeing their films.

“Today the audience has become accepting. Age is just a number, it’s as old as you look, you have to be fit, you have to look good, because it’s a visual medium so we have to look after ourselves. I don’t want to ever be 21-year-old again, I’m very happy. At 21, I was so much more hyper, and anxious and I’m much calm, and I’m in a happy place in my 40s,” she said.

Stating that she will act for the rest of her life, the Bollywood actress quoted the famous song ‘Jeena Yaha Marna Yahan Iske Seeva Jana Kahan’ from her late grandfather Raj Kapoor’s 1970 film “Mera Naam Joker”.

“I don’t know if I’ll walk away because I just love what I do. I’m just passionate about being in front of the camera, and doing different parts, like ‘Crew’ will be different from ‘Jaane Jaan’, one is a comedy role and another is an intense thriller. I don’t know anything else and I want to work forever,” Kareena said.

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