Freida won’t play girl who wears sari, bindi
She might be an Indian by origin, but actor Freida Pinto isn’t looking for roles that suit the stereotypical image of an Indian woman. “I don’t present myself as an Indian girl who wears a sari and a bindi and is waiting to get married in America. I present myself as a strong global woman. Someone who grew up among all cultures and is willing to embrace all cultures, which, I feel, are good for my character,” says Freida, who made a mark with the Oscar-winning film Slumdog Millionaire (2008). “I’ve never given out a message that suggests I am looking for a stereotypical Indian role,” she adds.
However, the 30-year-old says making a mark in Hollywood is not easy for an outsider. “There are preconceived notions like, ‘If she is a beautiful brown-skinned exotic girl, she will play only those kinds of roles’. This is something that I have to fight every day,” says Freida, who has been seen in films such as Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011), You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger (2010) and Trishna (2012).
She feels grateful to have been accepted by the audience, but says the journey hasn’t been easy. “I’ve been fortunate that people have accepted me for the way I am. But it is tough … those who think I lead a very glam life don’t know my struggle behind trying to make it easier for Indians to be accepted in Hollywood,” says Freida.