In the past a number of actresses such as Mamta Kulkarni, Shilpa Shinde, Kalki Koechlin, Kangana Ranaut and actors such as Ranveer Singh have opened up about the issue of casting couch. But a recent revelation shows the other side of the coin.
Television and film producer Ekta Kapoor exposed a dirty side of the entertainment industry. She accepted that the industry has a number of powerful producers who take advantage of their authority to exploit the aspirants. But amid the heightened debate over casting couch against filmmakers, she said a lot more which is quite shocking.
Ekta Kapoor said that there are also actors who use their sexuality to get work. During Burkha Dutt’s show ‘The Town Hall’ for Mirror Now, the producer was present with actress Nimrat Kaur. When asked about if a Harvey Weinstein existed in Bollywood too, and if the #MeToo campaign has helped women in the entertainment industry in coming out with their ordeal, Ekta Kapoor made several shocking revelations.
“Well, I think there are Harvey Weinsteins in Bollywood, but there is probably an equal number of Harvey Weinsteins on the other side of the story, but people do not want to talk about that part. Yes, there are people in power like producers who use their power to take advantage of people, but at the same time there are people on the other side, like an actor or others who need the job, would also use their sexuality to get things done. Therefore, I believe that predators should not be put in a box based on power. It is always not true that the person who does not have power is the victim.”
Citing examples from Bollywood, without taking any names though, Ekta Kapoor further said:
“Being a producer, on a personal level when I talk to my male counterparts, they said they were propositioned blatantly. Is that person not a predator? In our industry, if one actor meets a producer at 2 a.m. and hooks up with him and after five days, if she wants a job based on that and the producer doesn’t give the job because he wants personal and professional things separate, then who is the victim here? The interpretation is always that the powerful person took advantage of the poor little budding actor or something that is always not the truth.”
For the uninitiated, earlier this month, Ekta Kapoor’s father and actor Jeetendra Kapoor’s cousin accused him of sexual harassment. She had come forward and filed a police complaint 47 years after the alleged incident took place. Jeetendra however, termed the allegations as “baseless”, and a “miserable effort by a jealous competitor to disrupt his business activities”.