“Our Presence Is Not Valued As Much As A Star Kids’ Presence” – Taapsee Pannu On The Bias In Bollywood

Divya Rao
Taapsee Pannu for Label Ritu Kumar at Lakme Fashion Week SR18
Taapsee Pannu for Label Ritu Kumar at Lakme Fashion Week SR18

If you followed Bollywood news last year, you’ll know that one of the most talked about topics was that of nepotism. It all began when Kangana Ranaut openly accused Karan Johar of nepotism on an episode of Koffee With Karan, and since then, there’s been a lot of talk about the same. Some actors denied it others like Ranbir Kapoor openly admitted that he’s a product of nepotism.

Whether you agree with it or not, it is true that star kids get a lot more attention than industry outsiders. They’ve got easy access owing to who their parents are – and that’s not belittling their talent, but it can’t be denied that it’s easier for them to get that foot in the door.

In a recent interview with Indian Express, Taapsee Pannu spoke about the bias in Bollywood, stating that star kids get a lot more attention than actors like her who’ve ‘slogged’ to get to where they are.

There are so many times our presence is not valued as much as a star kid’s presence even though they haven’t earned that space which people like us have slogged for. We have worked from scratch to be where we are. Despite that, we are very easily taken out of a project, and that hurts.

She also opened up about the struggles of being a female actor trying to find her footing in a city like Mumbai.

As a single person in Mumbai, I had trouble finding houses. Nobody wanted to give their apartment to a single working girl, that too an actress. They said things like, ‘Struggling actors aa jaate hai aur unke paas paise nahin hote hain’ (struggling actors come to the city but don’t have money to pay their rent.) I had the toughest time trying to convince them that I had the money to pay my rent.

She added that it isn’t always as rosy as it may seem.

On camera, I am in heaven, I love my job. That’s what keeps me going. Off camera, there are things that I feel I won’t be able to do. The struggle is harder when you don’t come from a film family. Sometimes you get rejected just because you don’t come from an influential background so that kind of breaks your heart a lot of times. At that time, to pick yourself up is difficult. In such times you think ‘kahan aa gaye, ya kyun aa gaye.’

It’s so refreshing to see an actress be so honest about her struggles, and look how far she has come! Last year was Taapsee’s year, and this year too, she’s got some exciting films lined up. We’re looking forward to watching her slay on screen. Are you?

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