Ah, yes, we are a nation of song and dance. Bollywood is staple diet in any respectable North Indian family. The rest of the country has their regional films to take a cue from. What can I say? We are a melodramatic lot! Everything for us is larger than life. Drama is life-giving. Emotions are at an all time high. Don’t believe me? Watch a cricket match with us, something as inconsequential as Twenty 20, and you’d be convinced.

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So the story goes, Dad was associated with the Indian Film Industry for 45 years. Yes, that is HUGE. He came along to Bombay with the first family of films, only never to return. He handled production and artists, but was ever ready for a shot under the arc lights. He’d often say, if you ever want to see revenge take shape, make a man an actor for a day. Those spot lights will follow him wherever he goes. I’ve seen the ugly side of films, up, close and personal. It never intrigued me to follow, hence. But Dad loved it. He’d love to do little bits in movies, even as he handled back stage. Yup, he is the postman out here.

Over the years, just coz Dad was in Bollywood, we’d be subjected to the weirdest queries and requests. We’ve been asked if we could make sure Amitabh Bachchan met with the guests. We have been specifically instructed to give others a part in a big budget movie, since they were good friends. Some have even gone to the extent of telling us that their destinies have foretold, they are the future stars. I’ve lost count of the number of people we’ve packed back to their hometowns. Right from youngsters to well settled professionals, we’ve had all sorts come to us to try their luck. Someday, I will write that darn book!

I am reminded of a time when I attended a trial show of the movie ‘Henna’. It was the awaited RK banner and the expectations were high. We were at RK studios in Chembur. The movie was about to begin when a young man came and sat on the steps ahead of me. All the seats in the auditorium were taken, you see. He was oddly familiar, but I could barely make out the silhouette in the dark. He sat there for a better part of the movie till someone offered him a seat. And then I saw him, against the back-lit screen. It was Captain Abhimanyu Rai from Fauji. He was still to become Shah Rukh Khan, the superstar. The year was 1991.

Yes, Bollywood is glamour but it is also blood, sweat and tears. At the end of a month, the salaried employee is assured of a cheque, and perhaps an appraisal. Out here, you have no clue how long the next assignment will take. Talent, luck, opportunity, casting couch…you can call it anything. But the important thing is, if you are trying your luck in Bollywood, always, and I mean always, have a plan B. 


And a special footnote for this challenge.

My Social Circle

My dear friend Roshni is doing a delightful little thing on her blog. You think you know a whole lotta English words, well then check out how well you do, right here.

Janaki Nagaraj is the one you should befriend. She has Bollywood connections. But also because she is woman who weaves words at the drop of her hat.

From the AtoZ Stables

Here are a few blogs that caught my fancy. I plan to stalk them during the challenge.

Heather Gardner, J. Lenni Dorner, and The Blutonian Death Egg

As for ME

Been there, done that.  Broadcast to the world.




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