Actress Divya Dutta believes that the casting couch is not a ‘women’s problem’. Dutta said that the issue is not gender specific and affects the society at large.
Speaking to Hindustan Times, she said, “There are all kinds of people everywhere. It depends on what a woman wants. Wherever there is ambition, wherever there are opportunities, there are bound to be these kind of proposals. It is not just confined to women, it also happens to men. We can’t say it’s a woman’s problem. This is the society’s problem at large.”
While Dutta herself has not faced this situation, she still empathises with those who have faced it. “What a woman needs is a good family background and strong support from friends and I had it. If you don’t have a family and you need friends then you may get lost in this world because this is a very unpredictable profession. So, find your own way and enjoy it. If you find it difficult, then look for other options. Don’t make a do and die situation out of it,” Dutta added.
In recent times, actress Tisca Chopra had opened up about her experience with the casting couch last year, revealing how she used her wits to escape the south Indian producer-directors’s trap.
Another actress, Archana Veda, who made a mark in Telugu films with her performances in movies like Nuvvostaante Nenoddantana and Nenu, revealed that she was a victim of the casting couch. She didn’t name the actor who put her through the ordeal, but admitted that the person was a “big star” in Tollywood.
Interestingly in 2015, Ranveer Singh also opened up about being a victim of the casting couch, calling the director a ‘highly sleazy gentleman’.
“I had worked as an assistant director and I knew that there are no takers for 500-page portfolio. Mine was very impressive and people were intrigued enough to at least take a look at it,” Ranveer said. The man advised Ranveer to be open to “take and touch”, with the actor rejecting his advances. “I later spoke with other strugglers who said the man had made similar propositions to them,” Ranveer revealed.
Many found his revelations surprising, as the general opinion is that male actors are spared from the ‘sex for roles’ issue in the industry.
Feature Image: Divya Dutta’s official website