Radhika Apte Recalls Demanding Same Pay As Other Actors in Big Movie, Says 'I Put My Foot Down'


Radhika Apte has shared her experience of negotiating an equal salary as her co-stars for “a very big production.” The 34-year-old actress was speaking at We The Women event, curated and moderated by journalist Barkha Dutt. Radhika discussed issues relating to sexism in Bollywood.

Radhika admitted that she was surprised when the studio immediately agreed, but she also acknowledged that as an established Bollywood actor, she was in a stronger position than most women to secure equal pay. She, however, pointed out that position came with some compromises.

“I have learnt in my life that saying no and standing up for myself constantly has gotten me nowhere. I have learnt to have different rules – say no to certain things, suck it up a little bit and then reach a place and say no and make a bigger impact. I am trying to do that," she told Barkha.

"When I was a nobody and I came here, I couldn’t do anything. Today, I am working for a very big production company, and I put my foot down, saying till you pay me as much as the (other) actors are getting paid I am not doing it. And I got that money,” Radhika added.

Radhika also talked about how she's left disturbed by most Bollywood films, even those that are celebrated as promoters of gender equality.

She said, “I don’t think they are talking about equality on many occasions. I don’t find myself in agreement with a lot of people. It is isolating. I sometimes wonder whether I am a bitter, cynical person or am I not getting something?"

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