Bollywood

We shouldn’t pull each other down: Sonam calls pay gap ‘difficult upward climb’

We shouldn’t pull each other down: Sonam calls pay gap ‘difficult upward climb’

Mumbai: Sonam Kapoor on Sunday said it is important for female actors to collectively take a stand when it comes to pay disparity and not try to pull each other down.

The 32-year-old actor said although situation is difficult, one cannot give in and settle for a lesser remuneration than what they deserve.

Asked about the pay disparity in Bollywood, Sonam said, “I make my choices because I have the privilege to do that. I can afford the courage of working in a film like ‘Neerja’ or ‘Khoobsoorat’. I know what my box office numbers are, I know what I deserve…

“There’s too much competition. If I am saying ‘I am not going to do this’ and take a stand, there’ll be another woman who will say, ‘it’s okay I’ll do it for this much.’ The point is, we need to stick together. That is not going to happen if you’re constantly trying to pull each other down. It’s a difficult upward climb.”

The actor was speaking at a panel discussion at ‘We the Women’ event, where she was joined by Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal, cricketer Mithali Raj, among others.

Citing an example, Sonam said, not long ago she turned down a film as the makers offered her “bad” money.

“Recently, I was offered a project which I was excited for, but the money being paid was bad. I made a call and said, this is very disrespectful. There was shock on the other side.

“I told them, you put me in a position after being 10 years in the industry, after giving the most profitable film ‘Neerja’ a year ago, so please tell me why is it that this is what you decided to give me?” she said.

The actor questioned if a film did not work due to a particular star why would the makers underpay a more successful actor to cover their losses.

“I told them to move on and get someone else to do the film. It was frankly very disheartening,” she added.

PTI