Although many exceptions within South India’s diverse population exist, most South Indians are dark-skinned. Film industries here are the most unique in that they discriminate against their own majority—specifically their women—for their dark skin tone. Day by day, it is becoming harder to see an actual South Indian woman play a pivotal role in a South Indian film since industries are resorting to casting fair-skinned actresses from North India. This op-ed delves into how Tamil and Telugu films have been creating a false reality for people to live in by setting unrealistic beauty standards and promoting gender stereotypes.

Videographer Nithisha Nantha Kumar can be reached at nithisha@umich.edu.