Parul Yadav on women in cinema: Female characters seem to exist purely to satiate the male gaze

The actor says that the portrayal of women in cinema is distressing not just here but all over the world
Parul Yadav
Parul Yadav
Updated on Mar 18, 2021 10:44 AM IST
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It’s the question Parul Yadav’s fans have been asking for a while now. When will Butterfly release? The film, a remake of Kangana Ranaut-starrer Queen (2014) is being co-produced by Yadav, who also stars in the lead role. “Butterfly will release at some point between May and September this year,” Yadav tells us. She also clarifies that the film will release in theatres. “We are definitely not looking at an OTT release,” she says. Where does she stand on the OTT vs theatres debate, that’s been the talk of the town recently? “I think film makers are essentially romantics and anyone who makes a movie wants it to be experienced in a theatre. None of us can even comprehend a life without the big screen! So much effort goes into making sure that each frame is right, with perfect picture and sound. So, we are all waiting for the Covid situation to normalise, not just to release the movies that we make but also just to be in a cinema and losing yourself to the immersive experience,” says Yadav, who is now planning to turn scriptwriter. “I actually dreamt of the story line and I woke up and wrote it down. I kept thinking of it for a few days and slowly it started to take on a life of its own. At that point I shared the story with the Mediente team and they all loved it but as a short film. Somewhere inside me, it felt like a feature so I decided to write it myself,” she says.

The Bandhu Balaga (2018) actor, who turns producer with Butterfly, shares that she has more productions in the pipeline. “While acting is my calling and I truly believe that I will act till the day I die,acting is still a minor though significant part of the moviemaking process. The nitty gritty of film making, the order in the chaos, the entire process of bringing a story to the screen is fascinating and that is why I am now producing. I am working on three or four new projects as a producer and it’s not necessary that I will be acting in them,” she says., adding that among the talent in Kannad cinema, “Sudeep is someone I admire tremendously.”

How does she, as a producer and scriptwriter, perceive the representation of women in cinema? “The portrayal of women in cinema is distressing not just here but all over the world. Female characters seem to exist purely to satiate the male gaze. It is definitely something that needs urgent correction and I will do my best to contribute to that correction,” she says.

Any plans to crossover to Bollywood? “Not really. I am quite happy with my work in the South Indian industries,” she says.


    Neha Sharma writes on Bollywood and television, for the daily Entertainment & Lifestyle supplement, HT City

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Monday, January 17, 2022