FROM DIRECTOR ANJALI MENON TO ACTORS MANJU WARRIER AND PARVATHY, SEVERAL WOMEN FROM THE WCC SPEAK ON WHAT THE COLLECTIVE STANDS FOR.
The Women in Cinema Collective, which was established soon after a prominent woman actor from the Malayalam film industry was abducted and assaulted earlier this year, has come up with a video that speaks about what the group stands for.
The Collective has staunchly stood by the survivor, even as other film organisations like AMMA scrambled to defend actor Dileep, who is accused of being the mastermind behind the conspiracy which led to the attack. However, the WCC has also met with criticism for "not doing anything". Some women from the industry have also said that they don't see the need for such an organisation since they've never faced any such harassment.
The video titled 'WCC Introduction' starts with director Anjali Menon speaking about the need to create an environment in cinema where men and women can work together happily and can expect safety, security and opportunity equally.
Director Geethu Mohandas, addressing the question why others were not "invited" to be part of the WCC says, "The truth of the matter is, we invited ourselves. Women from the creative fields, from different walks of life, we empowered each other. This is our strength." Geethu goes on to add that change is required and that the change must happen now.
Actor and director Revathy, screenwriter Deedi Damodaran, actor and director Sajitha Madathil, speak about how it's necessary for women to take charge and work towards equality in every sphere, including cinema.
Actor Rima Kallingal says a section of women have recognised that it's time they started thinking and acting for themselves rather than someone else telling them how to go about it.
Editor and director Bina Paul says that the Collective will give a sense of unity to not just women in the Malayalam industry but all over the country.
Screenwriters Vidhu Vincent and Dr Asha Anchy Joseph point out that the Collective is also about recognising gender inequality and stereotypes that are propagated in the name of cinema. Vidhu adds that it's unnecessary for men to be "afraid" of the WCC and that they are working with the support of male allies within the industry.
Screenwriter and director Sreebala K Menon says it's time that the role of women in 90 years of Malayalam cinema came to be known to the world.
Actor Padmapriya says that it will take a long time for organisations like the WCC to change rigid social ideas about women.
Screenwriter Indhu Nampoothiri notes that WCC is interested in seeing how they can contribute towards making this social change.
Actors Ramya Nambessan and Parvathy, and music director and singer Sayanora Philip refer to the survivor's courage and her will to not give up and say that the WCC was formed to ensure no other woman undergoes what she had to.
Cinematographer Fowzia Fathima and director Soumya Sadanand say that the WCC was established to change the cinema industry to a space where a woman can work with dignity and that the gender sensitivity we expect to see on screen should also be reflected in how cinema is made.
Speaking at the end of the video, actors Manju Warrier and Rima Kallingal say any woman in cinema who believes in the ideas that the WCC stands for is welcome to join them and that they look forward to the support of allies.
Watch the kickass video here:
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