When a film like Wonder Woman is made for Indian audiences and becomes as big a box office hit as Pathaan, Indian cinema will witness pay parity, said actor Kajol on Thursday. She was in the capital to participate on the first day of the 2023 Jagran Film Festival in New Delhi. When she was asked when will pay equality be achieved in the film industry, Kajol initially quipped: “Ask an astrologer?” The actor then said audiences have become “much more literate” today thanks to social media and exposure to global content through streamers.
“India is progressing… They watch a lot of different types of cinema thanks to social media and OTT. We are thinking better, hoping for better. When you start making a Wonder Woman (which starred Gal Gadot) for India and it does equally well as a Pathaan, then maybe there will be pay equality,” she said in her response.
Kajol, who was recently seen in the Disney Hotstar series The Trial: Pyaar, Kaanoon, Dhokha, further said she almost did a film with acclaimed director Mani Ratnam. Things, however, didn’t materialise since she had committed her dates to filmmaker Karan Johar for Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998).
“I was supposed to shoot for Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and at that time, I got an offer from Mani Ratnam to do a film for him. First of all, I didn’t believe I got an offer from Mr Ratnam.
But things didn’t work out because I had committed those dates to Karan for Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. A lot of people told me ‘You should have done Mani sir’s film’. At that time, I felt that my commitment was more important and it worked in my favour,” she recalled.
Asked to choose between her two popular characters Simran from Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge and Anjali from Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, the 48-year-old picked the latter.
If she had been writing the evolution of Anjali, the actor later said the character would be dressed like a rapper in track pants.
“Today, you can say ‘Anjali shouldn’t have worn a saree‘ or ‘Why didn’t Rahul fall for her when she was in track pants?’ You can ask these questions right now, but the Raj and Anjali of that time perhaps fell in love because of exactly that. Times have changed and so has the definition of love,” she added.
Speaking of changing times, Kajol said film personalities have lost their mystery due to the access enabled by social media.
“Everything is on social media. Film stars no longer shine bright in the sky, they now walk among us. They are now grounded people. That is the biggest change, I feel. In a way, it’s good. In a way, it’s something we have lost. It depends on how you look at it. As far as cinema goes, it will always be a reflection of society,” she said.
The JFF is being held in the national capital from August 3 to August 6 at Siri Fort Auditorium. It will screen over 55 films from all across the globe, spanning diverse genres, languages, and themes.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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