While talking to a leading daily recently, Nawazuddin Siddique said that more than nepotism, it is racism that has plagued Bollywood for years. He said, “I fought against it (racism) for many years. I was rejected for many years only because I’m short and I look a certain way, although I can’t complain now. But, there are so many other great actors who fall prey to this kind of bias.”
This is not the first time when a celebrity has pointed out how the entertainment industry blatantly promotes racism. From actors endorsing fairness products to dancing on songs that are obsessed with gora rang, Bollywood has been infamous for glorifying racist stereotypes.
Sadly, it is 2021 and it seems that B-town has still not learned from its mistakes. From brown washing actors to using prosthetics to make Indians ‘look like Chinese’, there have been several Hindi movies that have normalised racism. Scroll ahead to know what we’re talking about.
Here are five movies that are downright offensive and show racist stereotypes:
So, Indian-Chinese twin sisters (both played by Deepika Padukone) were separated when they were toddlers. As per the movie, one of them had ‘slanted eyes’ because she grew up in China and the other one didn’t because she grew up in India. Yes, that’s weird and DP’s statement on it was even more problematic. During an interview with a daily, the actress revealed that she was worried about taping her eyes as it could have damaged their shape permanently. But, what about the fact that it was offensive to East Asian people?
Why did Alia Bhatt have to darken her face to play the role of a villager in Udta Punjab who played hockey and worked in the farm fields? Also, if the makers needed a dark-skinned actress to play the role, why did they not cast one in the first place? It’s extremely problematic to associate particular skin colours to different sections of society and even more offensive to promote it in movies.
Did you notice Hrithik Roshan in Super 30? He was the man behind all that bronzers! Jokes apart, we wish that we had not seen the actor applying darker shades of foundation all over his body and speaking in a terrible Bihari accent. TBH, Bollywood’s obsession with brown facing the fair-skinned actors is shameful.
The casting of the movie was quite ironic and we wonder if the producers ever saw the problem with it. Bhumi Pednekar played the role of a dark-skinned woman who questioned the unrealistic beauty standards set by society. The movie pointed out people’s obsession with fair complexion and all the discrimination that dark-skinned women have to endure.
All that sounds progressive, but we just have one question—why cast a fair-skinned woman to play the role of someone with a darker complexion?
Our entertainment industry has discriminated against and ignored actors from religious and ethnic minorities for years. While cis men play the roles of transgenders in movies (looking at you, Akshay Kumar), foreigners play the role of desi girls in movies like Love Aaj Kal. We saw something similar when Priyanka Chopra played the titular role in Mary Kom.
The fact that Bollywood filmmakers didn’t consider any northeastern actress good enough to portray the role of northeastern boxer reeks of racism.
It’s 2021 and we literally expect Bollywood to do away with its regressive thought process and racist stereotypes.
Featured Image: Instagram