• With Akira Bollywood puts women at the centre of its plot

    Sonakshi kickboxes in ‘Akira’, Bollywood celebrates the power of womanhood

    Professionally, actress Sonakshi Sinha has never been happier. Women in Bollywood, she believes, now have a gamut of roles open to them, thanks to filmmakers who have understood that women today are so much more than a love interest for men, and an audience that demands great female characters.

    “There are some great characters being written for women in today’s films and I am really happy for that,” said Sinha, quoted by the newspaper ‘Business Standard’, at the launch of the song ‘Rajj Rajj Ke’, which she sang herself, from her film ‘Akira’.

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    ‘Akira’, directed by AR Murugadoss, is an action-thriller in which Sinha’s character is the focus. The actress who was criticised for merely playing the love interest in her first few movies, has now taken the spotlight herself, training hard for fight scenes of the kind usually assigned to men. Watch the trailer and you know how well she fits this role.

    “It’s actually been the most challenging, most physically demanding film I have ever been a part of,” said Sinha, quoted by News18. “I had to undergo gruelling training in mixed martial arts, and work on myself so I look convincing.”

    Bollywood seems to have undergone a huge change over the last 10 years or so, with a host of female-centric films releasing on a regular basis.

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    Sonam Kapoor’s ‘Neerja’, based on the true story of the Air India air hostess who saved the lives of the passengers on board a flight hijacked by terrorists, garnered rave reviews. And actresses like Priyanka Chopra, Kangana Ranaut, Alia Bhatt and Deepika Padukone have all held their own in their respective films ‘Mary Kom’, ‘Queen’, ‘Highway’ and ‘Piku’.

    Though this is an incredible change for an industry that till not very long ago dressed its actresses in chiffon saris and choreographed them dancing around trees. No doubt a fair share of that still happens. But the fact that strong female characters on screen are not only accepted but sometimes even demanded by audiences is more important.

    Because films reflect life. And perhaps India really is on the right path to gender equality.

    Feature Image Credit: Youtube