Reema Lamba, best known as Mallika Sherawat, was born on October 24, 1976, in Moth, Haryana.
Mallika made her Bollywood debut with the 2002 movie, Jeena Sirf Merre Liye. However, Khwahish (2003) and Murder (2004) made her more well known, and from then, she was considered a bold actress due to her roles in the movies.
Earlier this month in an interview, Mallika revealed that she also faced the stereotypical reaction from her family regarding her decisions to work in movies. In the interview with Bollywood Bubble, she said, “My father was like — she will go into films and ruin the family name. He disowned me. So, I disowned his name. I adapted my mother’s name. Sherawat is my mother’s name.”
In an interview with Pinkvilla, Mallika claimed that despite her fame at the time, she never collaborated with a major Bollywood star because they wanted her to compromise.
“The only reason I have lost out on roles is because I refused to give in to male actors, big stars who wanted certain things from me, who wanted me to compromise. You know I come from Haryana, I have a lot of self-respect, and a lot of pride. I said I will not compromise. I don’t need to be in your big movies, that’s why till date I have never acted with any A-lister male hero, and besides that I have survived, and that itself is a testimony”, Mallika added.
In the interview, while talking about the casting couch Mallika explained, “I haven’t faced it directly… My rise to stardom, I was very lucky, it was very easy. I came to Mumbai, I got Khwahish and Murder. I didn’t have to struggle much. But after the movies, because Murder was such a bold movie, and that kind of a bold image was established, a lot of male actors started taking a lot of liberties with me, and they said if you can be so bold onscreen, so you can be bold with us in person also.”
“They did not differentiate between the onscreen and offscreen persona, so that is where I faced a lot of difficult situations, because I am a very strong woman, and I would tell the male actor, ‘I am sorry, I am not going to compromise’. I haven’t come to Bollywood to compromise, I have come here to make a career. That’s why they have never worked with me,” she added while explaining that A-listers were not able to separate her onscreen role and offscreen personality.
Mallika Sherawat will next be seen in the upcoming mystery-thriller web series, Nakaab which stars Esha Gupta and Gautam Rode alongside Mallika in the lead.
Edited by Anupama Roy