Taapsee Pannu, who next will be seen onscreen in "Saand Ki Aankh", has said that actresses still get five to 10 per cent pay as compared to the total payment of male actors, primarily because the audience watches more male-driven films.
"I would like to urge people out there to give an equal chance to films led by females, because only then will change happen. Until now, we (actresses) get five to 10 per cent payment as compared to our heroes and that is because you all probably walk into a male-led films more than you walk into female-led films.
If you go to theatres (to also watch female-centric films) then we can actually achieve equality in our industry. So, please help us to achieve that," said Taapsee, while interacting with girl students at a promotional event along with her 'Saand Ki Aankh' co-actor Bhumi Pednekar on Thursday in Mumbai.
At the event, Taapsee said that women should support other women to achieve their dreams. "I feel girls need to help other girls to achieve their dreams because we can really make a difference if we join hands. There is no bigger power if a female joins another female. I think we should make everything equal not just at home but also in terms of educational and work opportunities or, for that matter, in terms of equal pay as well," she pointed out.
In their upcoming Diwali release "Saand Ki Aankh", Taapsee and Bhumi play India's oldest sharpshooters, Chandro and Prakashi Tomar.
Bhumi asked girls students to dream big. "I think the first step is to have a big dream. You will meet a lot of people throughout your life who will tell you that girls can't do anything, but you shouldn't listen to them. I think girls can do anything, so we should dream big, have an aim and just keep working towards it," she said.
Citing her own example, Bhumi said: "I decided to become an actor at the age of 12. In my family, there are IIM and IIT graduates, doctors and lawyers. So, in my family nobody thought I would become an actor. In my first film 'Dum Laga Ke Haisha', I was 90 kilos, so nobody could imagine this is where I will reach, but I was clear about my future. I think your hard work is the only thing that's going to give back the desired results."
Bhumi said that Chandro and Prakashi Tomar are inspirations to the country. "In our film, these dadis have picked up guns at the age of 65. They never led a luxurious life and they spend their entire lives for their family. Today, they have become such big examples of how to break stereotypes and how to achieve a dream. They have helped over 50,000 women. That's exactly what all of us need to try, so that we can set good examples," she said.
"Saand Ki Aankh' is directed by Tushar Hiranandani and co-produced by Anurag Kashyap, Reliance Entertainment and Nidhi Parmar. The film is slated to release on October 25.