Bollywood has time and again cast big names in roles that were ethnically inappropriate, hoping to cash in on the star value. From Farhan Akhtar in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag to Priyanka Chopra in Mary Kom, these actors weren’t the right choices ethnically, even if they did act well in the roles they were given. We have a diverse group of actors in the industry and instead of faking accents and using prosthetics that are racist, why not just cast actors who match the ethnicity of your character? 

We decided to replace these misrepresented characters with appropriate actors that deserve the stage:

1. Lin Laishram in Mary Kom

Though she was in the film, we would have loved to see this model and actor from Manipur play the lead instead of Priyanka Chopra. Who, was given prosthetic eyelids for the “oriental look” she was expected to portray in the film. 

2. Samantha Ruth in 2 States

We had Alia Bhatt play the role of a Tamil Brahmin in this problematic movie. And even though she couldn’t have saved the script, Samantha would have definitely saved us from Alia’s terrible accent, and had a conversation in Tamil to establish the character. 

3. Siddharth in Ra.One

SRK as Shekhar Subramaniam was cringe-y to say the least and we would have any day preferred a Tamil actor like Siddharth play the role. 

4. Dhanush & Priya Anand in Meenakshi Sundareshwar 

Instead of Abhimanyu Dassani and Sanya Malhotra, both of whom aren’t Tamil, we could have simply cast a Dhanush and Priya Anand, who have acted in Bollywood movies before. 

5. Diljit Dosanjh in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag

While Farhan did a brilliant job, Diljit Dosanjh would have been just as great as a Sikh legend, especially since he proved himself with his performance in Soorma.

6. Vidya Balan in Chennai Express

In a movie titled ‘Chennai’ Express, no one in the film was remotely from the city. And while Shah Rukh’s character was supposed to be ignorant and oblivious, that didn’t excuse Deepika Padukone as the casting choice. Vidya Balan would have been more appropriate choices for this role. 

7. Pankaj Tripathi in Super 30

Hrithik Roshan played the role of Anand Kumar in the biography. However, our problem with the film was that the filmmakers thought it was necessary to use brown face. If you wanted to cast someone, why not take someone who looks more like Anand Kumar, why not a brilliant Pankaj Tripathi?

Who would you have cast?

Design Credit: Sawan Kumari.