Bidita Bag: Web gives actors like me more recognition and love
Bidita Bag, who currently features in the web biopic The Sholay Girl, says the digital platform brings a lot of love and recognition from people all over the world
The Sholay Girl is based on Bollywood's first stuntwoman Reshma Pathan. It is directed by Aditya Sarpotdar. Bidita Bag says, "Web is very liberating. For actors like me, who are not part of any group or are not stars and we do not have that crazy fan following for us this platform is really good. We are getting recognition from fans through web."
"If this (The Sholay Girl) had released in cinema halls then it would not have done well. Digitally it is doing good. It has reached to more people in different countries and I am happy about it," Bidita told PTI. The actor, who came to notice with her performance in Nawazuddin Siddiqui-starrer Babumoshai Bandookbaaz, said she is still struggling to make her mark in the entertainment industry. "I have faced several rejections and because of it I could have fallen into depression but I chose to focus on my work. I have taken rejections positively and emerged stronger.
"There is a lot of struggle for actors like me, from monetary to professional. Today I have a house, a car, I have made some savings, I don't lead a luxurious life, I lead a basic grounded life," she added. Talking about The Sholay Girl, Bidita said she was not aware about Reshma Pathan and it was through the project she learned about the unending struggles of a stuntwoman. As part of her preparation, Bidita met Pathan, read a few articles and saw some interviews of her. In 1970s, Pathan entered the industry and became India's first female stunt artiste.
"I was stunned when I learnt about her. She is a very strong lady. She gained courage from her poverty to reach great career heights at that time. She has done stunts in quite a few films but Sholay is the most iconic one so the title is also that. "When she entered, the pay scale was bad, she was not recognised as a stuntwoman. She is the first woman to get a card from the stunt association and then more women joined in." Bidita said the series also explores the harassment and sexism that Pathan faced during her time in movies.
"She told us about how stuntmen used to flirt with her, how some heroes treated her (badly), she could have hit anyone, but she chose to handle it tactfully. She did not tell us to hide or not say anything, she rather said she isn't afraid of anyone. But there are many companies and people involved so to avoid legal hassle it was decided to not take names." Bidita will be seen next in Teen Do Paanch, a comedy-family drama film with Shreyas Talpade.
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