Rani Mukerji is making a grand comeback after a hiatus of over four years. Her last film was Mardaani where she played a no nonsense cop. Now, she would be playing a teacher who has Tourette’s syndrome but still wants to make a difference and hence joins a school. Her first batch is a bunch of unruly kids who just want to create menace for her and divert her from teaching them. Hichki, produced by Yash Raj Films, is a female oriented film which will portray Rani in a never before seen avatar. It truly is great to see her making an effort to come up with an informative as well entertaining material for the changing viewers of today. The film will be releasing on March 23 which is two days away from her birthday, which is today.
On the occasion of turning 40, Rani has penned a heartfelt letter online and has revealed about her journey spanning 22 years in the industry. More importantly, she called out the real issues faced by actresses in Bollywood. She spoke about the way women are treated like objects and the way their equity dies after they get married and have children. She bravely revealed that ‘sexist stereotyping’ is the MAIN Hichki which female actors in Bollywood face and time has come that we re-write this convention. Here is her full letter.
“It feels great to be 40! It feels great to have also worked for 22 years and having been incredibly lucky to get so much love and appreciation. Very rarely do we artists get material that can genuinely cause social change, cause change in attitude and thinking and I have been fortunate enough to get such content multiple times. I truly feel blessed. I thank all the film-makers who have trusted me with their characters. Your characters, your films, became my identity.
I realised very late that I was actually born to be an actor that I was born to entertain. And I hope I have been able to do just that. As a woman, I must admit, it has not been an easy journey. I had to prove myself every day. Actresses have to prove themselves every day,”
She soon addressed real issues and said, “Woman has a short career span, a married woman’s equity dies, women are not bankable commodities at the box office, ‘female-centric’ (I hate this word!!) films are huge risks, a married actress who is also a mother is the final nail in the coffin of her dreams, ambitions and aspirations – these are some of the discriminatory stereotypes that we have to live with and try to overcome every single day.
For a woman, the disparity with a man is huge and glaring in this industry. We are judged for our looks, our dancing skills, our height, our voice, our acting, how we carry ourselves every time we step out of the house – we have to be the best and yet we are thought to be extremely dispensable. I have been asking my friends to talk about their weaknesses and how they overcame them.”
She signed off with, “I have tried to take on this sexist stereotype by coming back to acting after my marriage and motherhood. And I promise you, I will continue working and battling these stereotypes with all my fellow stunning, beautiful, kind and talented actresses and hope to see our society and the film industry mature further.”