‘Women’ issues


I met a potential producer-cum-director recently. Who thought the ultimate manner in which to interest me for his project was to say it is a woman-centric project.

“Really,” I say. “What is the subject?”

“Woman-centric,” he says emphatically.

“But which woman-centric subject are you exactly referring to,” I further prod.

“Please read this madam,” he says and hands me am A-4 size paper.

The woman is bold, and centre of this movie.” It says. “She is mother nature, the mother and all other roles wrapped into one. She is a strong woman and will be lead in this film.” And similar other platitudes.

So I hand the paper back and go back to what I was originally saying. “I am not really a film person and won’t be able to help you.”

” But madam, it is woman-oriented,” he plaintively exclaims.

“But you are not telling which women’s issue..” , I say.

“You may steal my story so I cannot tell you the story,” he says. That I understand, up to a point.

“Well.. it’s about rape, hunger, motherhood and poverty.. it’s a ground-breaking film.. with a strong woman character..” he adds.

“That really says nothing..” I say, trying to end this futile conversation..

He lets it go.. starts talking possible cast. I am suggesting women who I think can play strong characters.. Nandita Das?

“No Madam, she is old now. How will I sell my movie if she is in it?” His reply.

My expression tells him it’s the wrong reply.

“It will be a festival film, no? We won’t be able to afford her plus she already has Bawandar.”, he backtracks.

My eyes have glazed over. I now get what most of film maker friends say when they say that the real film industry has to still catch up with the rest of the world.


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