There is something strange about an article headline that screams “Don’t call me a woman filmmaker” – It reads to me as if the comment came from someone who is ashamed of being a woman. And surprise surprise how do I feel when I discover that the comment is attributed to me?? Well that’s the kind of thing that makes me type out this note at 12:58 AM.
I have been a woman much longer than I have been a filmmaker and my identity as a woman is something I cherish even more than my identity as a filmmaker.
I hope a big part of this short journey of mine as a filmmaker has been about venturing into uncharted territories. About taking risks and finding new ways. However when folks shine the spotlight on my gender and ignore everything else, it really does irritate me.
So I have stated time and again that a filmmaker should be judged by their work and not their gender. And that simply is the point.
Being a woman is a privilege I was born with, something that has shaped my sensibility and sensitivity and world view for as long as I have known. Like most women I too am strengthened by my experiences and it is the truth when they say “a woman is like a reed, she bends to every breeze but she does not break in a storm.”
‘Woman’ is the far deeper, wider and bigger word – is it even right to use it to qualify a more limited term like ‘Filmmaker’? Think about it 🙂
P.S: I spoke to the journalist who interviewed me for that article and found that she hadn’t framed the headline – apparently her newsdesk thought it was an appropriate one!! Grrrr….