Manisha Koirala’s Stand Against Objectification: A Reflection on Early Career Challenges

Manisha Koirala opened up about an uncomfortable experience with a photographer.
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Manisha Koirala, renowned for her recent success in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s “Heeramandi,” courageously recalled a significant moment from her early career. The Bollywood actor shared how she stood firm against pressures to conform to industry norms, particularly regarding a request to wear a bikini for a photoshoot by a prominent photographer.

Standing Firm Against Industry Pressures

In a recent interview, Manisha Koirala reminisced about the incident where she was asked to pose in a two-piece bikini. Despite being encouraged as the “next superstar,” she firmly declined, asserting her stance against unnecessary objectification. “I wear a bikini for swimming or at the beach, but I refused to wear it just to get into movies,” she expressed.

The photographer’s response was dismissive, criticizing her reluctance with a remark that resonated deeply. “He said, ‘Jo mitti pighalne se sharmati ho uske murti kaise banaye’ (How do I make a statue from clay that refuses to melt),” Manisha recalled, highlighting the industry’s mindset during the 90s.

Reflections on Industry Norms

Manisha acknowledged the prevalent mentality of that era, where such requests were not uncommon. Despite the photographer’s initial skepticism, he later had to photograph her again when she became a prominent star. “Oh, I knew you were going to be a big star,” he remarked, a turnaround that Manisha found reflective of the industry’s superficial judgments.

Reflecting on the incident, Manisha balanced understanding with her stance, recognizing the societal and professional pressures that shaped such behaviors. “Their exposure was that, so they behaved like that,” she remarked, suggesting a nuanced understanding of the industry’s dynamics.

Recent Career Highlights

Manisha Koirala’s journey continues to be marked by significant roles, including her portrayal of Malikajaan in “Heeramandi” and her appearance in Kartik Aaryan’s “Shehzada” in 2023. Her resilience and talent have garnered widespread acclaim, reaffirming her status as a versatile actor in the industry.

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