Audiences pay to watch actresses “sizzle and be [a] glamorous [heroine]” in commercial movies, and “I don’t believe in a heroine clad in a saree” – these offensive comments were made by Tamil filmmaker Suraj at an event promoting his upcoming movie Kaththi Sandai. “They are paying money to watch Tamannah in a glamorous role. If they want to act, they can do that separately,” he said when asked about the actor’s role and costumes in the movie, according to The News Minute.

At the promotional event, Suraj went on to make further degrading comments, adding that he directs costume designers to shorten the length of the clothes actresses wear if they cover their knees. “If the costume designer comes to me with the heroine’s clothes covering up to the knee, I tell them to shorten the length. They would repeatedly say that ‘madam would be upset’, but I insist and get it done,” the filmmaker told reporters.

His misogynistic remarks did not go down well with actors Tamannah and Nayanthara. “Actresses are not strippers who shed clothes for money,” Nayanthara told Sify. “Audiences who look up to filmstars are far more mature and respect women more than Suraj does.”

Meanwhile, Tamannah said she was “hurt and angered” by her Kaththi Sandai director’s comments, adding that he ought to apologise to all women in the industry. “We are actors, we are here to act and entertain the audience and should not at any point be objectified as commodities,” she said in a statement on Twitter. “It is sad that women in our country are spoken about so frivolously.”

The director later issued an apology, saying he had not intended “to show anyone in bad light or hurt their sentiments”. “I am sorry and take back my comments,” Suraj said in a statement, according to India Today.

Credit: India Today