The other day, I saw Cinderella on OTT platform. From the very outset, I must say that I have never been a fan of stories; where a girl needs a boy or a prince to salvage herself, and to find meaning in her life. So, when I began seeing this 2021 film based on a fairy tale by the same name, I had my share of doubts. But having been stuck with a pandemic that has managed to find new strains every other month and thus refused to go away, I have had more than enough time to see this romantic musical. More so because I was promised a contemporary twist into this old tale!
The film started slowly. And like French wine, it took time to hit me. Initially, I thought the director had gone overboard, but by the time the film reached midway, I thought it just took off. Without depicting characters in black and white, it showed humans as they are. They are good and bad, depending on the situation. But the best part of the film was it beautifully and seamlessly shed the inherent patriarchal overtone like it did in any other good old story. It showed its lead protagonist, Cinderella, refusing to part ways with her long-cherished dream at the pedestal of being a princess by marrying the prince. The highest point of the film, however, was when the prince himself refused the throne, which was never his dream. Instead, it rightfully went to his sister, who always relished in getting involved with the affairs of the state.
As I look back at Cinderella, my mind wanders at those Bollywood films of the 1980s, where a girl or woman was showcased as a mere prop that would appear in the film to entertain the hero and the audience. She was the glamour and sex element in the film aimed at giving the audience a break from otherwise intense drama. In the film, the Indian women were always represented to be weak, sensitive, and innocent. Except in a few rare, hardly mainstream films, it was taboo for a girl to express her love or sexual desires. Even in a comparatively progressive film like Damini (1993), a woman, who was the main protagonist, could successfully fight a battle, only when there was a strong man by her side!
Things began to change, albeit slowly, from the 2000s when women with ambition and desire started getting some footholds, though they still were judged (Bipasa Basu-starrer Jism is an apt example). For me, however, it was in 2013 through Kangana Ranaut’s film Queen when Bollywood truly showcased what the girl or woman of the current era wants. Even Sridevi’s English Vinglish (2012) had its elements that promised to break the mould, but in the end, the protagonist went for what I call a so-called honourable settlement within the boundaries of the household.
Nowadays in movies, women are showcased doing things that they would not have done earlier; they are seen entering unconventional fields like sports, education, or politics. Women’s representation in films has influenced the real-life situation, as we see women flourishing in various sectors. We are witnessing women working in different sectors taking up jobs of higher posts and being authoritative.
In today’s films, women are shown walking shoulder to shoulder with men; they are shown unapologetically powerful and intelligent. They have their own identity and they refuse to compromise with that. A movie like Thappad, where Tapsee Pannu does not tolerate even a slap from her husband, says it all. Similarly, the depiction of Gunjan Saxena in the film by the same name showed the courage, grit, stamina, and strength of a girl who doesn’t need a boy or a man to survive or excel in this world.
And as I ponder over this journey of Bollywood, I wonder when Indian society will start truly appreciating a Simran (of Queen) or an Amrita (of Thappad), and start encouraging girls to become Cinderella-like where her dreams aren’t sacrificed at the altar of obsolete patriarchy. It’s time for women to fly in the sky. That’s where they deserve to be. Always!
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RANI WRAPS UP ESTONIA SCHEDULE OF ‘MRS CHATTERJEE VS NORWAY’
MUMBAI: Estonia schedule of Rani Mukerji-starrer ‘Mrs Chatterjee Vs Norway’ has been completed. On Tuesday, the makers of the film took to their social media handle to share the update with the fans. They also posted a picture, wherein we can see Rani celebrating the completion of the schedule by cutting a cake with the whole cast and crew in Europe.
As per a statement, Rani and the entire crew shot in a bio bubble with all necessary precautions. The final schedule of the movie is expected to begin in India soon. Directed by Ashima Chibber, ‘Mrs Chatterjee Vs Norway’ revolves around a journey of a mother’s battle against an entire country. Apart from ‘Mrs Chatterjee Vs Norway’, Rani will also be seen in ‘Bunty Aur Babli 2’, co-starring Saif Ali Khan and Siddhant Chaturvedi.
SUNIEL SHETTY AWESTRUCK AFTER MEETING BIG B
MUMBAI: Believe it or not but even celebrities also get star-struck after they meet their favourite actors. The same happened with veteran actor Suniel Shetty after he appeared on the show Kaun Banega Crorepati hosted by megastar Amitabh Bachchan.
Taking to his Instagram handle, the evergreen actor shared a picture with the megastar from the sets of the game show Kaun Banega Crorepati. Sharing the picture, Suniel penned a note reflecting his visit to the show and how he got ‘wonderstruck’ and already a ‘crorepati’ after meeting Big B.
“Wonderstruck as always at the knowledge and discipline one can imbibe from the legend the mighty Mr Bachchan. After that you always walk away a #crorepati. Thank you for the moments Amitji. #KBC #KaunBaneCrorepati #sony @amitabhbachchan @apnabhidu #lockkiyajaye #mahacomputerji.”
NICOLE KIDMAN OPENS UP ABOUT DIVORCE FROM TOM CRUISE
WASHINGTON: Hollywood star Nicole Kidman recently gave some brief insight into her marriage and subsequent divorce from actor Tom Cruise.
Though typically both are shy about commenting on the end of their marriage, however, according to Fox News, speaking to a fashion magazine for its upcoming October issue, Kidman was willing to discuss the immense media scrutiny their relationship invited in the 1990s. Kidman and Cruise got together after meeting on the set of ‘Days of Thunder’. The actors married just six months after the movie came out in 1990 and remained together for more than a decade before finally splitting in 2001.
The outlet reported that Kidman’s acting career started to be eclipsed by all the attention surrounding her personal life and marriage. However, looking back now, she sees only her culpability in the media narrative. With a laugh, Kidman told the interviewer, “I was young. I think I offered it up? Maybe I’ve gotten a bit more trepidatious, but I’m always trying to be as open as possible. I just prefer to live in the world that way.”
She further added, “I’m wary at times, and I’ve been hurt, but at the same time I much prefer a warm approach rather than a prickly shutdown approach.” Kidman went on to note that the experience left her heart “open” when she finally met her now-husband, country singer Keith Urban.
BOLLYWOOD STARS SHOWER BIRTHDAY WISHES ON KAREENA
MAHARASHTRA: As the ever-gorgeous Bollywood star Kareena Kapoor Khan turned 41 on Tuesday, several of her family members and fellow celebrities from the film fraternity, poured in birthday wishes for her.
Kareena’s sister Karisma Kapoor shared pictures from their childhood on her Instagram handle and wrote, “Will always be by ur side. Happy birthday to the best sister in the world.. my lifeline. love you the mostest. #birthdaygirl #sisterlove #beboisthebest #happybirthday.”
Filmmaker Karan Johar, one of the closest friends of Kareena, shared a selfie with the birthday girl and wrote, “We are pouters and posers in crime! So much love for my favorite girl on her special day! Happy birthday to my poo for life (that can sound wrong on many levels but bolna banta hai!) Love you so much.”
Actress Kangana Ranaut extended her birthday wishes by sharing a collage featuring stunning pictures of Kareena. She wrote, “Happy Birthday to the most gorgeous of them all.”
Kareena’s brother-in-law Kunal Kemmu posted an adorable picture to wish her on her special day. Malaika Arora on her Instagram shared a clip of the ‘3 Idiots’ actor and wrote, “Happy Birthday to my most stunning n beautiful Bebo. Keep Glowing n shining… Love you.” Kiara Advani, who shared screen space with Kareena in ‘Good Newwz’, also shared a stunning picture of the birthday girl and wrote, “Happy birthday to the most iconic superstar! Love you, Bebo.”
Actress Jacqueline Fernandez also shared a picture of the ravishing beauty while sending her greetings on the special day. “Happy birthday Kareena. Wishing you the best in your life and adventures. From Jackie,” she wrote.
ARJUN KAPOOR ON VENTURING INTO FOOD & FITNESS SPACE
MUMBAI: Bollywood actor Arjun Kapoor, who battled obesity since childhood and has gone through a remarkable physical transformation. Recently he said that he will soon be venturing into the food and fitness space. Talking about how fitness has changed his perspective, Arjun revealed, “People have been kind enough to notice my transformation. My fitness journey has not only changed the way I look at food, nutrition and fitness but it has also changed the way people look at me. The opportunities and offers coming to me have also changed.” He further spoke regarding wanting to venture into the food and fitness space and said, “I have definitely initiated multiple conversations to explore myself in the food and nutrition space and I’m excited for some of the things that will materialise soon. I will be in a position to share more concrete details in the days to come. I want to be a part of ventures that are aiming to revolutionise the fitness space!” In August, Arjun had opened about his battle with obesity in an interview with a leading daily, wherein he said how his “underlying health condition has always made it a struggle for him to constantly stay a certain size”.
Later the 36-year-old actor had disclosed that he joined forces with world kickboxing champion Drew Neal to push himself to get the correct body type, and seems like his commitment to fitness is reaping benefits for him.
‘THE CROWN’ TAKES THE THRONE AT EMMYS 2021
LOS ANGELES: Netflix’s ‘The Crown’ won big at the Emmys 2021. This show which follows Queen Elizabeth’s life throughout the decades of her reign was declared winner of the Outstanding Drama Series award at the 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards. It also bagged awards for best actors (drama) and best actors in supporting roles. The show also took home the best writing and directing award.
On such a remarkable win, the team of Netflix took to the streaming giant’s official Twitter handle to congratulate the members of the show. “Congratulations to the cast and crew of The Crown for their 11 Emmy wins — including Best Drama Series, Best Actress for Olivia Colman, and Best Actor for Josh O’Connor https,” the tweet read. Apart from ‘The Crown’, ‘Ted Lasso’ also registered a golden win at Emmys 2021. It racked up four wins, including for best comedy and star Jason Sudeikis. Emmys moved to an indoor-outdoor venue this year due to the pandemic. It was held on Sunday at the Event Deck at LA Live.
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