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Richa Chadha says Hindi film industry didn’t consider her good looking

Mumbai: Actress Richa Chadha says the Hindi film industry didn’t consider her good looking because of her skin colour and body type.

“For the longest time, for most of the industry, I was not good looking. I was good looking only for my mom and dad, because I was dusky, didn’t have a model-like figure.”

The actress was speaking at the session ‘Breaking the glass ceiling of misogyny in Indian media and entertainment’ at the 18th edition of FICCI Frames here.

The session was moderated by filmmaker Imtiaz Ali.

Asked if there is a difference between the approach of male and female directors, Richa says her myth burst soon while working with Mira Nair.

“My third big job in life was to work with Mira Nair to assist in a short film, which hasn’t been released yet. I observed how she walked into the set and commended respect without ever raising her voice.

“It was a bustling crew which would often fall silent, not out of fear but respect… I saw this woman director, who could be my friend, could also be maternal towards me and I learnt so much from that. It’s fun to work with good director, irrespective of gender.”

Actress Tannishtha Chatterjee, who has featured in several award-winning films, helmed by both male and female directors, says the issue isn’t gender specific.

“It’s very individual. It’s not gender specific at all. You can have a very insensitive female director and a very sensitive male director. It’s not gender specific.”

Tannishtha believes much of the gender divide in the country can be addressed and solved if the films start showcasing female characters differently.

“I feel the narrative at large in our society will only change through pop culture. It is a space where people grow up with those ideas and images. In our country, film is a huge pop culture and the change should come from there. Tell stories where you represent women differently,” Tannishtha says.

Actress Priyanka Bose, singer Priyanka Bose and Vani Tikoo were also a part of the panel.

PTI