From Partners to Mothers: These Films Highlight Bollywood's Age Gap Problem

The bizarre age gap between actors and actresses in some Bollywood movies was beyond disturbing.

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4 min read
From Partners to Mothers: These Films Highlight Bollywood's Age Gap Problem

It appears that the phrase, 'Age is just a number,' was literally coined for Bollywood actors. An actor twice as old as the female lead is seen romancing her happily, and no one bats an eye. What's even more absurd is that sometimes, actresses younger than the actors play their mothers!

This problematic and frustrating age gap between actors and actresses has been talked about forever, but does Bollywood really listen? And does age only remain constant for actors? Do actresses hit their 'expiry date' as soon as they cross their 30s?

This obvious stereotype stems from the sexist mindset of our society. Somehow, the concept of aging only exists for women. So, after a particular age, female actors are only cast as mothers, while the men can play lead roles well into their 60s.

Here are some of the movies, in which the age gap between actors and actresses made us cringe:

1. Waqt: The Race Against Time (2005)

Waqt is a classic example of the bizarre age difference between men and women actors. It paired Amitabh Bachchan, who was 63 at the time, with a 33-year-old Shefali Shah. They played husband and wife, which is uncomfortable to watch. If this wasn't enough, the makers cast Akshay Kumar, who is five years older than Shefali, as her son. To top it off, Priyanka Chopra, who was 22, played the female lead.

2. Zero

This movie had defied all logic and concepts of physics, so the age gap between Shah Rukh Khan (53) and both the female leads – Anushka Sharma (29) and Katrina Kaif (34) – wasn't very surprising. But Aanand L Rai took it a step further and had Sheeba Chaddha, who is six years younger than Shah Rukh, play his mother.

3. Gangs of Wasseypur-2

Gangs of Wasseypur is considered a cult film and is appreciated a lot. Be it the phenomenal storyline or exceptional performances, everyone who has watched this film can't stop talking about it. But what's slightly disturbing is the fact that Richa Chadha, who was 25 at the time, played Nawazuddin Siddiqui's mother, and Huma Qureshi, also 25, played his love interest.

4. Bharat

Salman Khan's label as the 'most eligible bachelor' doesn't seem to fade because he's often seen romancing actresses who are almost half his age. Even in Bharat, Katrina Kaif (who is 18 years younger than Salman) plays his love interest. On the other hand, Sonali Kulkarni, who is nine years younger than him, plays his mother.


5. Bachchan Paandey

Akshay Kumar is another actor who is often paired with actors much younger than him, but in Bachchan Paandey, his mother is played by Seema Biswas, who is three years younger than him!

6. Dabangg

In Dabangg, Dimple Kapadia, who plays Salman's mother, is not younger but merely eight years older than him. On the other hand, Sonakshi Sinha was just 22 when she starred opposite Salman. Is anyone else cringing?

7. Om Shanti Om

Granted that Shah Rukh is the ultimate 'King of Romance', but pairing him opposite Deepika Padukone, who was almost half his age, in Om Shanti Om is still questionable. Meanwhile, Kirron Kher, who was 13 years older than Shah Rukh, was his mother in the movie.

8. Yaadein 

The 2001 movie Yaadein starred Hrithik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor in lead roles. The age difference between Hrithik (27) and Kareena (20) is still bearable, but Supriya Karnik, despite being a year younger than Hrithik, played his mother, and that is definitely not okay.

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