Mahima Chaudhry: Earlier, people only wanted actresses who were virgins and had never kissed
Mahima Chaudhry prefers to call a spade a spade, and doesn’t shy away from saying it loud and clear that the film industry was not kind to its female actors previously and has evolved now. The actor claims that earlier, it was “far more male dominant” than it is now.
Elaborating her point, she says, “I think the industry is getting to a position where female actors are also calling the shots. They getter better parts, better pay, endorsements, they’re at a great and much powerful position. They have a longer shelf life than before.”
Chaudhry, who began her career with the 1997 film Pardes opposite Shah Rukh Khan, notes that back in the day, even the relationship status of a female actor had direct impact on her professional life and opportunities that came her way.
“The minute you started dating someone, people would write you off because they only wanted a virgin who had not kissed. If you were dating someone, it was like, ‘Oh! She’s dating!’. If you were married, then forget it, you career was over, and if you had a child, it was like absolutely over,” she recalls.
Citing actors Govinda and Aamir Khan she shares, “Even when Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak came, we didn’t know he was married, same for Govinda. People didn’t show their children’s photographs or expose them as that would tell their age! All these things have really changed between now.”
Contrasting how things have changed for the better now, the 48-year-old your relationship status is no longer a deciding factor for whether you want to continue with your career or have a personal life.
“Earlier, it was either or, but now, you can continue with both. Now, people are accepting women in different kind of roles, even romantic ones post her becoming a mother or wife. Her personal life is celebrated. Even the men used to hide their [their relationship status] before, a lot of them. Post their film’s release or many years later, we got to know so and so was married,” she wraps up.