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Alaya F Speaks Out on Inequality and Distressing Encounters in the Film Industry

Bollywood’s fresh-faced actress Alaya F is currently preparing for her on-screen appearance in the much-anticipated film ‘Srikanth’, starring alongside Rajkummar Rao. Despite her relatively novel presence in the film realm, Alaya has encountered a series of what she describes as ‘awful’ experiences on certain film sets. During a candid conversation with Puja Talwar on her YouTube channel, the young starlet revealed the unsettling realities she faced within the industry—an industry her family has long been associated with.

Displayed on Alaya F’s Instagram account, the actress discussed disheartening experiences where her co-workers displayed a lack of concern for her well-being, neglecting her interests and leaving her to navigate unsavoury treatment alone. “There are some films where I had awful experiences on set. You are working with people who just don’t care about you. They don’t really have your best interest at heart. You have to fend for yourself. You have to handle situations in which you are not treated nicely,” she expressed, highlighting the harsh truth that even with industry ties, one is not exempt from facing the brunt of professional adversity.

Alaya, daughter of the seasoned actress Pooja Bedi, burst onto the silver screen with her commendable performance in the 2020 hit ‘Jawaani Jaaneman’, alongside Saif Ali Khan. Although her career commenced with a high-profile project, it didn’t shield her from the grim aspects of the job. The shock stemming from such occurrences was profound for Alaya, as she admitted the expectations of working in the entertainment industry did not align with the actual encounters she endured.

The actress also took the opportunity to highlight the broader issue of gender disparity in the industry. “When you work on a film, you really want it to be a safe, happy, and productive environment. Not to forget there is a big difference in the way men and women are treated in the film industry,” Alaya mused, signifying the ongoing struggle for gender equality in Bollywood. According to her, there have been numerous occurrences which pointed towards the gap in treatment based on gender—a sentiment echoed by her female colleagues.

Following her debut, Alaya F’s career trajectory has seen her dive into an array of characters across various genres. Post ‘Jawaani Jaaneman’, she appeared in the psychological thriller ‘Freddy’ and went on to star in ‘Almost Pyaar With DJ Mohabbat’ and ‘Bade Miyan Chote Miyan’. Her next role in ‘Srikanth’ is highly anticipated as it chronicles the life of Srikanth Bolla, a visionary entrepreneur who, despite being visually impaired since birth, established Bollant Industries that focuses on empowering unskilled and differently-abled individuals. It’s a narrative that promotes inclusivity and perseverance, themes that resonate with Alaya’s own experiences.

Aside from Rajkummar Rao, ‘Srikanth’ will feature Jyotika and Sharad Kelkar in pivotal roles. The production is helmed by a collaboration between T-Series and Chalk N Cheese Films Production LLP. Under the directorial guidance of Tushar Hiranandani and scriptwriting talents of Jagdeep Sidhu and Sumit Purohit, ‘Srikanth’ is gearing up for its grand release in theaters on May 10, 2024.

As Alaya F stands at the precipice of her next big release, her revelations shed light on the less talked about challenges actors face behind the glitz and glamour. Candid disclosures from actresses like Alaya play a pivotal role in evoking change and awareness in the film industry, paving the way for a more equitable and supportive environment for future talent. (With inputs from Agencies)