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Was Fired from Jobs Because I Was Pregnant : Neha Dhupia

neha dhupia pregnancy a thursday
Is the Indian film industry finally celebrating a pregnant working woman on screen? In an upcoming film, Neha Dhupia plays the part of a pregnant cop, while she herself was eight months pregnant.

“Being cast as eight months pregnant, when you are actually eight months pregnant has not happened in the business before.”

This is phenomenal. For a Bollywood that has done everything in the past six decades to hide pregnancies, not disclose marriages and celebrate the item girl, there is clearly a shift.

In A Thursday, directed by Baizad Khambatta, she was hired as an actor to play a cop. She is pregnant through the show and was so in real life at the time of the shoot. Dhupia’s second one was born shortly after and is four months old now. In an exclusive interview, SheThePeople asks her about losing out on roles during her pregnancy.

“When I started out, in 2002-03, even then there was this thing – motherhood equals sabbatical equals comeback. That’s not how it should be.” Dhupia, who won the Miss India title in 2001 has acted in filmed like

Just before the lockdown Dhupia signed on a few projects. “At the time I wasn’t pregnant. We did some work back in Nov or Dec 2020 and then the lockdown happened. And then by the time I came back to work I got pregnant.”

“I reached out to some of the other people I was working with, I got fired from those jobs because physically, on contract, they wanted me to look a certain way.”

While she understands that some projects needed her to look a different part, she doesn’t deny being fire from these roles hurt her. “Did it hurt? Yes it hurt. Did I feel bad about it? I did feel bad about. Did they do anything wrong? No because they hired me in a certain look, so they couldn’t.”

In A Thursday, Dhupia becomes the first actor to play the part of a pregnant cop, when she was actually pregnant. The director, Baizad, says Dhupia was very supportive and felt no reason to not have Dhupia act just because she was expecting a child.

“He took a pause, and I ask him – now what. Will I be replaced? He said of course not. Don’t cops get pregnant?”

His comment came as a surprise to Dhupia but that shouldn’t be the case. Directors across the board should be more supportive of women and also pregnant women at work.

A new film is breaking stereotypes. Neha Dhupia is cast in Disney’s A Thursday as a pregnant cop when she was actually pregnant with her second child. Is the Indian film industry finally getting things right ? Director Baizad Khambatta asked Dhupia a simple question that changed it all. “Don’t cops get pregnant?”

Dhupia says in an interview with SheThePeople“Being cast as eight months pregnant, when you are actually eight months pregnant has not happened in the business before.”

Kudos to Khambatta for making this happen. For decades we have not had this conversations across Bollywood. The film industry has for decades encouraged actors to hide pregnancies, marriages, relationships claiming it impacts a woman’s career. Today, in 2022 as directors consider hiring women in roles that are real is phenomenal. Having a pregnant cop in the film itself is a break from past stereotypes in India.

In A Thursday, Dhupia is pregnant through the film and was so in real life at the time of the shoot. Dhupia’s son was born soon after. SheThePeople asks her about losing out on roles during her pregnancy.

“When I started out, in 2002-03, even then there was this thing – motherhood equals sabbatical equals comeback. That’s not how it should be.” Dhupia, who won picked the tile of Miss India in 2001 has acted in many films.

Dhupia signed on a few projects before the COVID lockdowns hit the world. “At the time I wasn’t pregnant. We did some work back in Nov or Dec 2020 and then the lockdown happened. And then by the time I came back to work I got pregnant.”

“I reached out to some of the other people I was working with, I got fired from those jobs because physically, on contract, they wanted me to look a certain way.”

In A Thursday, Dhupia becomes the first actor to play the part of a pregnant cop, when she was actually pregnant. The director, Baizad, says Dhupia was very supportive and felt no reason to not have Dhupia act just because she was expecting a child.

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