Actress Kalki Koechlin feels it is unfortunate that the word feminism has gathered a lot of negative feedback with many people not even realising its true meaning.
The actress says people often associate feminism with that of 'ranting women' who hate men. "There is a misunderstanding and lack of awareness about the word. Feminism seems to be tagged as a bunch of ranting women or women who are against men. The word feminism is about the equality of gender. A lot of people are feminist but they don't even realise it," Kalki told PTI.
Several people within the industry have been divided over feminism as well, often saying that they believe in gender equality but are not feminist. The 33-year-old actress says the focus now should be on making the word cool again. "It's just the fact that I think some people (within the industry) don't realise what it means. The term feminism has got so much negative feedback. I think now it's about making the word cool again," she said.
Kalki says bringing gender equality in cinema requires no less than a social movement where strong roles are written for women. "It changes with time, it is about a social movement. I personally wait for those scripts. I am greedy for good roles, if it's not happening, I'll write something. As an artist I need to keep expressing myself. But for it to become a real movement it needs to be like a social awareness. Everyone needs to cone together. It's happening now where women Issues are being talked about," she said.
Kalki, who is gearing up for her latest release Mantra, says things are changing within the commercial cinema space for strong female characters. "Even commercial films like 'Piku' and 'Queen' are fine examples of films held by women and not the conventional hero. The content needs to change and the writing itself needs to be less hero-based. I don't have a problem with hero-based film but we have very few heroine-oriented movies. That writing needs to change. If it's not happening, make it happen," said the actress.
Set in 2004, in the midst of a nationwide 'India Shining' campaign, Mantra tells the intimate story of a family and its travails, and through it, the story of India post liberalization.
Directed by Nicholas Kharkongor, the film also stars Rajat Kapoor, Shiv Pandit among others. "Mantra" is scheduled to release on March 17.