Mallika Sherawat ,Aishwarya Rai Bachchan , Priyanka Chopra….Bollywood is crazy about getting noticed abroad .
Years ago Shabana Azmi was all charged about being signed by Blake Edwards for a Pink Panther movie. So were all her diehard fans, like yours truly. Finally her role turned out to be as minuscule as Mallika’s clothes.
“But I got paid handsomely and was treated like a true princess,” Shabana still defends what’s arguably her most embarrassing international sojourn. Would Shabana have done her 10-minute evil princess’ act in a Bollywood film?
Long ago Mallika was offered an item song for Varma’s James. She told the producer she would do it if there was a nice meaty role attached to the song.
Ramu got Riya Sen to do the item.
Wait, one is a little lost here. Mallika had a problem doing an item song for Ram Gopal Varma. She had no problems being seen doing practically nothing in a Jackie Chan flick. Strange!
Not only that, when Chan had chugged to Bollywood for one days’ promotional tour for The Myth, Ms Sherawat clung to his arm like a life-boat. She made it quite clear that she wanted to be seen with Jackie in every frame of the photographers’ lenses. And she went to extreme lengths to make sure she was Jackie’s girl for the 24 hours that he was here.
Flattered out of his pants, in manner of speaking, Chan openly told the press corps that he had agreed to come only because Mallika had called and pleaded with him to do so.
This embarrassing confession came after Chan threw more tantrums in Mumbai than Zsa Zsa Gabor and Britney Spears put together. Oh, he didn’t want to talk to the press members individually, didn’t want interactive sessions with fans….didn’t want to be in Mumbai for more than 24 hours…didn’t want this and that…..
Good Lord! By the end of his visit , Chan’s Mumbai hosts were on the brink of a collective nervous breakdown. But the final straw was the confession that he had come only for Mallika.
Then there Oprah Winfrey. A diva, do doubt.But the way she stuck her nose up in the air during her short visit to India, made us feel very third-world.
Why do we take this kind of behaviour from international celebrities who grant us a bit of their precious time and attention? Achcha chalo, at least Jackie Chan and Oprah Winfrey are a major global players, and we could be forgiven for falling at their feet. After all we prefer Ben Kingsley to Naseeruddin Shah as Gandhi.
Even when American porn stars Brande Roderick and Sunny Leone came to Bollywood we rolled out the red(faced) carpet and blew the bugles as though they were Jennifer Aniston and Jennifer Lawrence with silicone implants.
Worse….Meera and Veena Malik from Pakistan comes to our country, avail of our hospitality , get signed for female-centric films and go back home to bad-mouth Bollywood and India.
Why do we encourage the Meeras and Veena Maliks of the world to behave so badly with us? Why do we need them in the first place, when we have such a fine and glamorous gallery of actors in Bollywood?
Let’s applaud biggies like Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor who have repeatedly said they’ve no interest in Hollywood and would rather devote their time and attention on home ground.
The example of Aamir Khan looms large over Bollywood. After the global success of Lagaan he appointed himself an Hollywood agent . Nothing happened.
So the next time you read about some Bollywood two-bit hero claiming he has been signed by a “big Hollywood studio” to play the lead, please tell him to shut up.
Hollywood doesn’t need Bollywood stars. And we don’t really need actors from outside to let us know what stardom is all about.
Because we in India have the biggest star in the world. And his name is Amitabh Bachchan.