Actress Priyanka Chopra revealed in a candid interview with InStyle magazine that she lost a movie role last year because of the color of her skin.
Though, that’s not the reason the studio initially gave for why they declined to give Chopra the role. At first, the actress’ agent was told that Chopra didn’t get the role because she had the wrong “physicality.”
“It happened last year,” Chopra said. “I was out for a movie, and somebody [from the studio] called one of my agents and said, ‘She’s the wrong—what word did they used?—‘physicality.’ So in my defense as an actor, I’m like, ‘Do I need to be skinnier? Do I need to get in shape? Do I need to have abs?’ Like, what does ‘wrong physicality’ mean?”
However, eventually, her agent explained what the studio really meant by “physicality:” “Like, ‘I think, Priy, they meant that they wanted someone who’s not brown.’”
Chopra did not give details about which specific role she was denied, or whether she was denied because the role called for someone of a certain ethnicity.
Chopra’s career in Bollywood, where she is one of the most highly paid actresses, would certainly seem to suggest that a woman can get fair compensation in the entertainment industry.
Despite that, the Baywatch star says she still sees sexism as a problem in the film industry.
“I want to see the day where female-led movies get as much of a run as the boys do, which means the ticket-buying audience needs to be open to that,” Chopra explained. “People don’t go watch females in movies because they don’t believe that they can be heroes. The world has to change the way they look at their heroes.”
She added, “Nothing will change until we break the stereotypes of gender in our normal, day-to-day life.”
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