After actress Tamannaah Bhatia tweeted a strongly-worded rebuke, now viral, her Kaththi Sandai director Suraaj has apologised for making the comments he has been widely slammed for.
On Monday, Suraaj claimed he has his heroines' outfits shortened because female stars are expected to provide the glamour in a film, not act.
His remarks were greeted with howls of protest and, hours later, Tamannaah posted a note writing she refused to be treated as a 'commodity.'
Suraaj has now apologised unequivocally, writing on Twitter: "I am really sorry and would like to apologise to Ms Tamannaah and all the heroines in the film industry. My intention was not to show anyone in bad light or hurt their sentiments. I am sorry once again and take back my comments."
My Apology Statement to all the Heroines In the Industry !! pic.twitter.com/dt6sIkJHly— Suraj (@DirectorSuraaj) December 26, 2016
On Monday night, an angry Tamannaah began by writing that Suraaj's comments prompted her to leave a show of Aamir Khan's new film Dangal midway - how ironic that Dangal should be a film about the empowerment of women, she wrote.
The 27-year-old actress demanded that Suraaj apologise not just to her but all her female colleagues.
"We are actors and we are here to act and entertain audiences and should not at any point be objectified as commodities," Tamannaah wrote, adding, "It's sad that women in our country are spoken about so frivolously."
Suraaj said in a media interaction on Monday, "Whenever my costume designer presents my heroine in knee-length outfit, I'd ask him to cut it short. If my heroine gets angry, I'd tell her audience haven't paid so much for nothing," reported IANS.
"Audiences pay money to watch the hero fight and heroines in full glamour. As a director, I don't like to see my heroines fully clad in a sari. If we're paying money to watch a film, we should expect Tamannaah to look glamorous. Any commercial film should have glamour," he said.
Actress Nayanthara also slammed Suraaj for his sexist comments and told Sify: "How can a responsible person from film industry make such a crass and cheap comment? At a time when films like Pink and Dangal speak about women empowerment and respect to women, in which era does Suraaj belong to? A heroine wears skimpy clothes in commercial cinema only if she is comfortable and the script requires it. And which audience is he speaking about who pay money to see heroine in bad light?"
Kaththi Sandai, which released on Friday with Aamir's Dangal, is an action film starring Vishal and Tamannaah in the lead. Tamannaah Bhatia starred in last year's mega-movie Baahubali: The Beginning and appears in next year's Baahubali: The Conclusion.