Shweta Basu Prasad feels directors need to be approachable towards getting female perspective right
With female-fronted content gaining prominence amid the OTT boom, actor Shweta Basu Prasad feels it’s very important to get the female perspective right in projects. And the filmmakers directors should be willing to accept the notes of change, wherever necessary.
“It all starts with the writing, it’s really important to understand both perspectives. For that, the directors need to be approachable and should be able to mix and work to just get the right perspective. That’s very important,” she tells us.
Citing example of her recent anthology, Ray, she says, “I told our director Srijit Mukherji that the climax was written from a male gaze, or a neutral gaze, and not from a female perspective. It was important for me as a woman to personalise it.”
The 30-year-old was relieved that the director was willing to hear her side, and incorporate the changes in his segment Forget Me Not in the anthology on legendary filmmaker Satyajit Ray’s stories.
“It’s so refreshing when you have a director like that, who understands that it’s important to bring in a female perspective,” she admits.
Here, Prasad actor looks back at the lanes of classic Bollywood era, picking out examples to show how some directors perfectly etched out a female character.
“We’ve had some fabulous filmmakers in the country who’ve written some fantastic feminist films, starting from Bimal Roy’s Sujata to Satyajit Ray’s Devi. It’s fantastic how Ray explored women in his stories,” she says, adding, “Even after that, Shyam Benegal did with Ankur and Bhumika. There were so many films with different actors, from Shabana Azmi to Smita Patil to Neena Gupta having their own journey. In fact, Gulzar sahab explored Sharmila Tagore so well, and Ketan Mehta did. I think Mirch Masala is so ahead of its times”.
The Serious Men (2020) actor wishes that the film came out today. “It’s such a feminist film. I wish it was a movie from the OTT revolution,” she expresses.
For the actor, it’s not only about just getting the female character right, but getting a sense of balance.
“Like the way Zoya Akhtar looks at Ranveer Singh in Gully Boy, or Farah Khan looks at Shah Rukh Khan. So there have been a lot of crosses that have happened where you have male directors who’ve written fantastic female characters,” she concludes.