Tanuja Chandra: I’ll never make a film where the woman is used as a wallflower

Filmmaker Tanuja Chandra whose forthcoming film Qarib Qarib Singlle is on the verge of its release, states that she is adamant to not make a movie where a woman is portrayed like a wall flower. Tanuja believes that the portrayal of men in the films need to be changed in order to bring in the change in the society for women. In an interaction with a leading Indian daily, Tanuja Chandra, said, I’ll never make a film where the woman is used as a wallflower. “The male character in my film, played by Irrfan, is appreciative of independent women. I have interacted with a few amazing men. It is necessary that their personalities be showcased on the big screens. My leading man is happy to be involved with a woman who is a feminist. And that’s essential. Let’s have more men say, ‘How wonderful, you are a self-made woman’.”

Chandra is glad to see the progress of women in Bollywood, however she says that their stories are hardly brought to light. “Such films are only welcomed by the industry if a celebrated female actor plays the part. But then, the story ceases to matter, being overshadowed by the cast instead. It’s business. Producers worry because male-oriented films sell fast, while those starring women don’t.” Chandra said.

She mentioned that the esteemed male Bollywood stars would hardly prefer to work in women driven films. Tanuja said, “Eventually, the film loses its value.”

Additionally, she said, “Yet, we only see a handful of female-oriented films hitting screens. This disparity is also evident in the industry, where female directors and producers struggle to be heard. However, things won’t change unless more women start writing and directing. The industry needs female directors, not only for the sake of equality, but for the creation of more female-oriented stories. Great cinema is waiting to be made. Unfortunately, only few of us are working behind the cameras.”

Tanuja’s support for women is apparent as she talks about the traits of her male lead in her film Qarib Qarib Singlle. She said, “Irrfan brings this character, this oddball, to life. He layers him with charm. Women don’t always fall for studs. They fall for men with a sensible mind and kind heart.”