The year 2018 will draw to a close in the next few months. Even today, if you look at all the sneers Kangana Ranaut gets, you will realise that it is not easy for a girl to stand on her own two feet, on her own terms. It is much preferred when she is hanging onto a macho man whose henchmen are pulling strings and making the lady climb up a few notches higher every once in a while. We are so comfortable with this pretty-arm-candy games that most girls play, we don’t know how to react when there is someone out there being different.
So most of the industry has decided they don’t like Kangana. Even the likes of Sonu Sood was in the news recently, telling all that he cannot work in a two-director movie, even if it is touted to be one of the biggest period films being made in Bollywood. We are talking about ‘Manikarnika’.
The film has already been in news for too many reasons, thus far mostly negative and filled with drama, but that’s Kangana’s regular. If all the news that we get from Bollywood has a Dharma film hangover, any news on Kangana Ranaut is like a Phantom production. Any talk on Kangana is laced with gore, grit and a heavy dose of gruesome details. It can be a talk about child abuse or sanitary pads, physical abuse to even voodoo magic, it can easily cover the angst spectrum with angry exes, angry co-stars, angry Kangana and more… you can never really know what comes out of the news you are reading when it comes to Kangana Ranaut. And what does the lady in question do? She smiles coyly and supplies some even more atrociously colourful data to supplement your morning chai or office gossip.
Right, when her co-star Sonu Sood was whining about the two director issue on the sets of ‘Manikarnika’, Kangana lashed out with aplomb, “Sonu and I haven’t even met since the last shot with Krish (director) last year. He is busy filming ‘Simmba’. He couldn’t even give us tentative dates to match combinations with other actors. The producers showed him the film and writers narrated the patchwork to him…he refused to meet me. He vehemently denied to work under a woman director, which is kind of amusing because Sonu is a dear friend and I have even launched the music of a film that he produced on his request, even though the team suggested that they have full faith in me, it seems, Sonu had neither dates nor faith.” Yes, Karan Johar somewhere might be going, “Look, look, she played the woman-card again!”
Kangana does that, she sits ramrod, holds her hands together and shoots from her mouth. She tackles every accusation anyone can think to throw at her and battles it with the kind of manipulation that needs mastery. Yes, she has used the underdog card, the victim card and the woman card but hey, the lady only carries the ammo that is needed for a single woman’s lone battle. When I say single, I don’t mean her relationship status, but the fact that she has been alone in this industry for the longest time. “There was a time I wanted to play by conventional rules. Bollywood works on this rural mentality, for instance, they call her doctor’s wife, doctorni in the villages. The same applies in Bollywood. If you work with the superstars, you are considered a superstar-ni even if you are just one film old. There was a time when I wanted to take that easy route, but then the Khans were not working with me. Now I am a hero on my own sets, why do I need another hero to support me?”
That’s straight-talking that Kangana should probably get copyright for. None of the heroines in Bollywood manages to speak with that kind of honesty. And she does it without giggling and calling it a joke which takes a lot of steel. Especially, because despite her body of work, her three National awards and being called the highest paid Indian actress, her sanitary pad has made more news than her achievements. “I want to know what is so wrong with menstrual blood? Why is it considered gross? When a man’s body fluid consumed in any way is not termed as witchcraft, why should a woman’s menstrual blood be considered means of sorcery?” Kangana would rather concentrate on the details than address the issue of being called a witch, slut and some rather despicable adjectives all by people she has claimed to have dated.
The fact of the matter is, you can no longer push Kangana Ranaut in a corner and gloat over her failures. To get her under your thumb is not possible. One might think it is her free spirit, clever mind, and quick reflexes that makes her snap up opportunities before you even realised their potential that makes you so afraid of her!