Bollywood has long been associated with larger-than-life portrayals of characters and traditional gender roles. However, a new wave of filmmakers and actors is redefining these norms, challenging stereotypes, and breaking barriers. In recent years, the Indian film industry has witnessed a remarkable shift towards more inclusive and progressive storytelling. From characters who defy societal expectations to actors who champion gender equality, Bollywood is undergoing a transformation that reflects the changing dynamics of society.

Ranveer Singh and Tota Roy Choudhury: Karan Johar’s Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani is being hailed for its modern approach to family saga by retaining Indian sentiments. In a very subtle, but extremely entertaining way, the maker has managed to blur stereotypical gender lines. In the centre of it all, is a Kathak jugalbandi. At the Durga Puja pandal, Rocky and Chandon Chatterjee – two men – seize the opportunity to perform a song traditionally associated with women. Ranveer and the talented Tota Roy Choudhury, portraying Alia’s father, create a significant moment in the movie when they break into dance with Dola Re Dola track. The dance sequence surprised the audience, and their excitement was visible in the theatres with their hooting and clapping.

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Arjun Kapoor: Arjun’s role in ‘Ki And Ka’ turned traditional gender roles on their head. Playing the character of Kabir, a husband who chose to be a homemaker, Kapoor broke away from the societal expectations placed on men. The film not only celebrated the role of homemakers but also underscored the significance of equality within relationships. Arjun’s portrayal of Kabir sent a powerful message that men, too, can challenge norms and pursue their passions, regardless of societal pressures.

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Akshay Kumar: Akshay’s ‘Padman’ shattered taboos surrounding menstruation and showcased a progressive male character who championed women’s rights. Akshay’s portrayal of a man challenging societal norms and advocating for women’s well-being challenged the traditional image of a Bollywood hero. By addressing a topic rarely discussed in mainstream cinema, Akshay contributed to a broader dialogue on gender equality.

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Neena Gupta: From raising a daughter to asking for an equal paycheck, Neena did many right deeds. The same she did in Badhai Ho, in which she played the role of a woman in her 50s who wants to keep her baby without thinking about society.

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Deepika Padukone: Piku has Deepika Padukone playing a modern woman, who is financially independent. In a country that is biased towards the ‘boy child’, hoping that the boy will grow up and take care of his parents, Piku explores the relationship that a 30-something woman shares with her old father. She is the caretaker and a woman who manages her own business.

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