Malayalam film actor Alencier Ley Lopez has sparked controversy over his sexist comments at the Kerala State Awards. The actor had received a Special Jury Award for his performance in the film Appan (2022) from Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. In his acceptance speech, he said the state must stop ‘tempting’ him with a trophy modelled on the female body. After his comments caused outrage on social media where many demanded that the actor make an apology, Alencier has said that no one should teach him morality. (Also read: SIIMA Awards 2023: Ram Charan, Ponniyin Selvan to Kantara, here are the nominees in key categories)
What Alencier said in speech
It all began on Thursday when actor Alencier Ley Lopez took to stage to accept the award at the 53rd Kerala State Film Awards 2022 presented by the Chalachithra Academy at the Nishagandhi Auditorium. In his speech, he said, “I have a request. Do not tempt us by presenting this statuette, modelled on a woman. We have a Chief Minister who is an epitome of masculine strength. So we should be awarded with a figurine that reflects the strength of a man.” His remark went viral on X (formerly Twitter) were many users called it ‘offensive’ and ‘disgraceful’. In the speech he also said that the cash award should be increased. “Do not insult us (special jury award winners) by giving ₹25,000. Please increase the reward.”
His reaction to controversy
Reacting to his speech, a user said, “After this disgraceful and offensive speech from Alencier (especially on the statuette), ideally the govt/jury should withdraw this award given to him, notwithstanding the quality of his performance. The comments show that he doesn’t even repent of his past actions.”
Many on social media have since demanded an apology from the actor, but Alencier has responded by stating that he would not apologise for what he said. “Don’t come to me to teach morality. The only abuser in Malayalam cinema, the one who always abuses… There are many who deserve that epithet. Don’t provoke me too much,” he said, as per a report by On Manorama.
He further added, “It’s not only women, but men too face various issues in the cine field. The actors who we call ‘Junior artists’ suffer the worst. If not the big stage, where will I make such a comment? I spoke at the event knowing it was a big stage.”