Serial maker Leena Gangopadhyay against being tagged as woman director

11:47 AM Mar 09, 2022 | PTI |

Kolkata: Leading TV serial maker Leena Gangopadhyay has said she is against being tagged as a woman director.


The 52-year old, who also directed and produced films, said she would rather leave it to audience to judge whether being a woman contributes to her being more sensitive in her creations.

Gangopadhyay, who had written the script for ‘Bhalo Theko’ (Take Care), a Goutam Halder-directed film featuring Vidya Balan, has extremely popular Bengali serials to her credit.

She is also chairperson of the West Bengal Commission for Women. ”Being a woman I had to balance work and duty both at home and outside which I think men usually don’t have to. There are no two ways about it. That’s about all,” Gangopadhyay told PTI.

Noting that she did not face any opposition because of her gender, Gangopadhyay said all that the audience wants is a good, relatable, likable story that can be penned by either a man or a woman.


“I also did not want any preference for being a woman. In the 19 years of my eventful journey in the Bengali entertainment industry, I moved from one point to another as I wanted to execute my ideas, transform my dreams, and my creative passion in my works,” she said on way to a shooting floor.

Well known as a scriptwriter for TV soaps like ‘Ichche Nodee’ (A wish-fulfilling river), ‘Punyi Pukur’ (Sacred pond), ‘Keya Patar Nouka’ (Boat made with leaves of Keya tree), ‘Binni Dhaner Khoi’ (Puffed rice made with unhusked paddy), ‘Ishti Kutum’ (Our relative), Gangopadhyay has also co-directed two acclaimed Bengali films ‘Maati’ (Earth) and ‘Sanjhbati’ (Evening light).

Asked if the notion that women directors impart a touch of sensitivity in their works is then a misnomer, Gangopadhyay stated, adding, “I said we don’t consciously do things with our woman identity in mind. If the audience discovered certain sensitivities in ‘Maati’, and ‘Sanjhbati’ and associated it with my feminine identity that is for them to interpret. That is for you to interpret”.

Many of her serials have been remade in various languages, and she has also written scripts for the Malayalam serial, “Kudumbavilakku,” and Tamil serial, ‘Bhagya Lakshmi’.

”I have worn many hats in my life ever since completing my masters. I had taken the plunge in the entertainment industry which was an extension of my literary career as a writer…as a human, as an individual, and not as a woman solely.

“But a woman has to be more than equal to the task than a man as she has to tackle many fronts,” Gangopadhyay said on Tuesday.

The responsibility as the chairperson of the state commission for women also introduced her to the crises and issues faced by women from different strata of society.

”Thanks to those who gave me the opportunity to be on the side of distressed women and deal with their myriad problems. On March 8, International Women’s Day, I take a pledge to perform all my roles with equal ease,” Gangopadhyay, one of the busiest producers of TV soaps and films, signed off.


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