Free Press Journal

Cinema should not have the responsibility of changing society: Actor Richa Chadha

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The burden of brining societal changes lies with politicians and not filmmakers, says Richa Chadha

Off screen, she is a vociferous campaigner against sexual abuse and gender discrimination. But when on screen, acclaimed performer Richa Chadha doesn’t want the “burden” of imparting social messages, a responsibility she says belongs to political leaders.

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“I don’t want to do this flag-bearing thing. Cinema should not have the responsibility of changing society. Sure, you should make good films which have some meaning and lead to something positive for someone, but one doesn’t want that burden,” Richa said.

“Sometimes, you just tell a story instead of looking for what lesson it imparts. We should look for messages from our political leaders whom we elect as our representatives, and not from actors,” added the 30-year-old.

Are our politicians giving out enough meaningful messages? “Zero,” came the pat reply from Richa, who added: “And this is something that unites them, whichever party they may be from. They are not inspiring, and that’s why the youth of today is more inspired by cricket stars, film stars or athletic stars.”

Having said that, she admits films, filmmakers and artistes have a responsibility. “We shouldn’t do unethical things, like we shouldn’t show women in bad light, or even show a particular community in a bad light, or sing stuff like ‘Hum kaale hain toh kya hua…’. Don’t do those things… (But) There should not be an unnecessary burden. Like when we tell a story about a murderer or con man, we are judged for glorifying crime. But we’re really just telling a story.”

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Richa, who has made the Hindi film industry sit up and take notice of her craft with movies like “Gangs Of Wasseypur”, “Fukrey” and “Masaan”, however, says celebrities must take on the responsibility of doing their bit to champion a worthy cause. She feels Hollywood actors can “afford to” take time off films and other projects to indulge in philanthropic works, but in India, actors are always in a hurry.