In a recent interview, Taapsee Pannu revealed that she worked in Judwaa 2 consciously, as she didn’t want to be labelled as part of a Mahila Morcha.  The actor who starred in women-centric films like Pink and Naam Shabana said, “This industry is quick to stereotype. People had started talking about how I was primarily being part of women-centric movies. I didn’t want to be labelled as part of a mahila morcha. I would want to have the option of singing and dancing as well.”

Taapsee is trying to defend her choice to act in a film where romance and harassment go hand in hand. She seems to be confused about the fan base she is targeting by acting in a film like Judwaa 2.

“With Judwaa 2, I captured the kind of market that I could have never penetrated into on another occasion. There is an entire audience that doesn’t understand the theme of Pink. That is the base that I have to capture.” She further explains, “By being part of films like Judwaa 2, I can ensure that I garner more fans, who’d then want to watch me in other powerful films. I need to be bankable for those movies to reach the right audience too.”

How ambitious of Taapsee to think that those people who whistle and holler when a hero forcefully kisses a heroine, or slaps her derriere without her consent, might one day come to see films about sexual harassment.

Wasn’t the entire point of making a film like Pink, to make that gentry understand the theme of the film? The audience that loved Pink, and the one that loved Judwaa 2 might as well be living in parallel universes.

Why people fail to differentiate between feminism and radical feminism.

A Republican Senate candidate in Missouri, Courtland Sykes said in a post on Facebook that if he ever had daughters, he didn’t want them to become “career obsessed banshees who (forgo) home life and children and the happiness of family to become nail-biting manophobic hell-bent feminist she devils.”

Public figures these days, including Pannu and Sykes, seem to have no idea that what separates feminists from militant feminists. It is the fear of being branded the later, that has pushed Pannu into undoing all the goodwill she had created via films like Pink.

Obsession with career or banishing family life does not make one radical.

But saying that women should stay at home to cook or work from home to take care of family or acting in misogynist films to reach a wider audience, pitches you opposite feminism. The public figures need to aim for the middle ground here.

Taapsee Pannu can avoid being stereotyped. She can do films that are neither women-centric nor misogynist. All she needs to do is to pick her roles wisely. As for her fan base, it would increase many folds, if she proves her mettle as an actor, rather than trying to please the masses.

Also Read : Why I am a Feminist: Nadika

Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section.  The views expressed are the author’s own

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