Shakeela biopic: 5 facts you need to know about this sex siren

Updated: Jan 04, 2019, 08:19 IST | mid-day online correspondent |

Shakeela, starring Richa Chadha, has been produced by Magic Cinemas and Yoddhas Entertainment. The film is set to release in Summer 2019

Richa Chadha/picture courtesy: Richa Chadha's Instagram account
Richa Chadha/picture courtesy: Richa Chadha's Instagram account

Richa Chadha, the Bollywood actress who has portrayed some unconventional characters in films, is all set to play the role of Shakeela, a South actress in adult films. Termed as one of the most anticipated biopics of 2019, director Indrajit Lankesh is all set to showcase the true life of an artist who defied various norms and rules of the film industry.

1) Shakeela was a contemporary of Silk Smitha:

In November, the makers of Shakeela biopic released the logo of the film with a controversial tagline, 'Not A Porn Star,' which clearly emphasised the entire perspective of the movie. Based on the life of the southern actress Shakeela, it is said that her popularity soared after the untimely and tragic demise of Silk Smitha. She was a huge reason for which Silk Smitha lost out on a lot of films.

View this post on Instagram

Presenting the first look of #Shakeela! @indrajitlankesh @ShakeelaFilm

A post shared by Richa Chadha (@therichachadha) onOct 31, 2018 at 6:55am PDT

2) Shakeela's films were dubbed in across 16 languages:

Even though she was known primarily for her roles in adult films, Shakeela's phenomenal success made her several enemies in the patriarchal industry. It is also said to have caused ripples in the male-dominated industry down south. Shakeela was an unlikely superstar whose films were translated into 16 languages including Nepali, Russia, Chinese, Sinhalese and other foreign dialects. Her box office performance was often responsible for helping cinema halls survive in B and C towns in the South.

3) Did you know male superstars of that era would push their films release dates for her?

Interestingly, the actress stood as a humongous threat to a lot of male superstars of the south. Many times, south superstars of that era, would often push their films release dates upon learning of a Shakeela film being released. Nothing stopped the sex siren to rule the box office in the '80s and '90s.

View this post on Instagram

The phenomena of her stardom is hard for grasp, impossible to forget! Shakeela . . . . . So excited about this one! . . . . #Shakeelabiopic

A post shared by Richa Chadha (@therichachadha) onOct 19, 2018 at 9:55am PDT

4) Shakeela acted in 100 films despite a ban on her:

The makers earlier released the first look poster of the film in November where Richa Chadha is seen wearing a gold outfit. In the poster, the actress was standing against the hate messages inscribed on a wall which not only showcased the discrimination but also major hatred towards Shakeela. The actress has faced a lot of criticism for her choices during the course of her career, the ban on her being one of them!

5) The wrath of hypocritical society didn't come in her way of success:

Though the actress defiantly faced the flake and insults scribbled on the wall behind her, nothing stopped her for attaining the success she craved for in the industry. The slurs referred to her skin colour, body and religious faith along with some obscene illustrations that have been scratched out.

The film also features Pankaj Tripathi, Kannada actor Esther Noronha and Malayalam actor Rajeev Pillai, the biopic will show the heart-wrenching journey of Shakeela.

Also Read: Richa Chadha: Shakeela Is Classic Case Of #MeToo

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