Bipasha Basu may have earned rave reviews for her performance in Raaz 3, a largely female oriented film. But, the actor feels there is a long way to go before heroines get their due in Bollywood. “It’s a very hero centric industry and it’s going to be difficult to break through that. When a film has a female protagonist, eyeballs become less. We see them as feminist films. If Bollywood stars making entertaining films with females playing a major part, then audience will be open up to the idea of seeing commercially entertaining films with the females doing something rather than just playing the hero’s love interest.”
Bipasha says that it is this dilemma that is making all her contemporaries “play safe”. “Everyone is going through the same emotions that I have gone through, over the years. Try and look out for something that has more meat. The articles about female actors always say that they are just pretty faces in the film. But think about it, how many opportunities do we have? If we don’t do that, what else do we do? If you don’t play safe, how do we last long? I’m one of those lucky ones who have stayed afloat ten years and choosing what I want to do. Everyone’s not so lucky. The business is such that makes you play safe,” she says.
So, are heroines more competitive than heroes? “I don’t think so. Heroines are struggling in their own space to make a mark as everything is taken over by a hero. To find your space next to the hero and the heroism he’s doing on screen, to leave your mark with whatever minimum you have, that is a struggle,” she says.