Stop Asking Female Actors If They Will Quit Acting After Marriage
Recently a fan asked Alia Bhatt during an “Ask Me Anything” session on Instagram, whether she will quit acting after marriage. Bollywood is abuzz with the gossip that Bhatt may be tying the knot with alleged boyfriend Ranbir Kapoor in 2020. So naturally, someone had to pose this question to the actor, because even in 2018, female actors not quitting work after marriage is a big thing.
This seems like a staple question to ask actors in a relationship or about to get married. For many people, working in films is still indecent or a bold career choice, which an ideal bahu must give up, for the sake of her matrimonial household’s reputation. Perhaps many people are still stuck in a mindset of three decades ago, when female actors had to either keep their marriages hidden from the public eye to thrive in Bollywood, or give it all up for family life.
Why must people pose such questions to female actors in this day and age? Even those actors who quit Bollywood for matrimony in 70s, 80s and 90s are all making a comeback one way or another. Some have found work on the small screen, some are doing commercials and most have impressive film projects in their kitty. Yet, people have to go around asking a 25-year-old talented actor, at the peak of her career, if she would quit acting after marriage!
When will people learn that Bollywood has slowly and painstakingly managed to break the ideology that a married heroine is no more sellable?
- During an “Ask Me Anything” session on Instagram, a person asked Alia Bhatt if she would quit working in films after marriage.
- Are some people still living in the 70s, when a heroine committed career sabotage by tying the knot?
- The careers of female actors in cinema are not defined by their marital status anymore.
Earlier, working in films after marriage was not acceptable to both the public or the actors’ families. This was because being a female lead meant romancing a man who was not your husband or gyrating to suggestive songs. Both unforgivable crimes, only to the female gender in cinema, post matrimony. But today there is more to being a female actor than romancing or seducing the hero.
Talented actors always find work, irrespective of their marital status. That’s not it, they have also found acceptance in the audience.
The success of Kareena Kapoor Khan, Vidya Balan or Anushka Sharma isn’t defined by their marital status. Their bankability is their talent and selection of films. And this goes for Alia Bhatt too. Bhatt is a talented performer. Raazi, in which she played the central character, crossed the 100 crore mark this year.
Then why must people ask her if she will quit acting after marriage? Perhaps it’s time the conservative people in our society accept that no field in the world is beyond pursuing as a profession, once you are married. It is the outlook which deems them unfit. Just because people think that it is improper for married women to romance other men on silver screen, or travel abroad to work, it doesn’t mean that it is true.
Perhaps a day will come when the society won’t be divided between those who understand that a marriage doesn’t mean that women make endless sacrifices both personally and professionally. For the time being, we can’t agree more with what Bhatt said, “There’s no need to give up anything but your status. I shall act and as long as I can.”
Picture Credit: worldtechfun.com
Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.