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Is OTT changing the Bollywood-built perception around body image?

We all know about how much attention Bollywood pays on their bodies. If you’re an actor and don’t have abs, or if you’re an actress and don’t have a ridiculously small waist, or if you’re too short or too tall, you’re almost dismissed at the audition stage of being an actor.

Even years after having become an actor, if there’s even the slightest change in the ‘perfect body shape’ the number of movie scripts at your doorstep begin to drastically decrease. Hence, we see a number of actors restricting their food and feeding the paparazzi market every day with their gym appearances. While working out and eating healthy are good things, the stigma around body image is extremely problematic.

However, this trend seems to have changed in recent times with the explosion of OTT content, in which people of all kinds of appearances are making lasting and successful impressions. Most times, the lead actors and actresses don’t have to sport built bodies. For example, The Family Man has Manoj Bajpayee who is lean. Sacred Games has Nawazuddin Siddiqui. Mirzapur 2, Criminal Justice and Broken but Beautiful have Vikrant Massey who isn’t as muscular as the traditional Bollywood hero, and Harleen Sethi does not have (or need to have) a thin waist. These shows have gone on to become big hits. Little emphasis has been laid on actors’ appearances.

Can Bollywood actors finally stop needing to look like mannequins? Is it finally time for unreal demands to stop? Is OTT changing the way the entertainment industry perceives and builds around body image?

Let us know what you think in the comments below!


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