Nepotism in Bollywood - the truth and the speculations

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Essay Contest for UPSC Exam for IAS

‘Bollywood’ one of the most celebrated industries in our country. The fact that people worship and immensely love their favourite Bollywood actors is absolutely undebatable . Be it imitating hairstyles of your favourite actor and actresses or following the fashion trends set up by them, people have done it all to show their love and fondness for their favourite Bollywood celebrity. The glitz and glamour of the Bollywood industry attracts many. But in the recent times , association of nepotism and Bollywood has increased .It was in 2017 ,when Bollywood actress Kangana Ranaut on a very famous Bollywood talk show ‘koffee with karan’ called the host of the show Karan Johar ,the flag bearer of nepotism, and how he is intolerant towards the ‘outsiders’ . This incident ignited a debate on whether the children of actor and actresses have to do zero to no struggle to bag roles in big banner movies. Recent and unfortunate demise of the young actor Sushant Singh Rajput has yet again heated up this old debate.The internal politics and relations of the industry is definitely a mystery for all.

But the fact that star kids do have a glamorous and grand debut can’t be denied ,but  isn’t it human nature for   parents to want their child to be successful and do everything in their capacity to ensure  the same,but when this willingness for your child’s success starts hindering someone else’s success ,it is definitely wrong. But then who is to be blamed,is it the star kids ,their parent or is it the audience?lets introspect , to make a Bollywood movie so much money is invested,hundreds of people are hired from spot boys to light men ,post production ,editing ,promotions and what not , all this for whom? For the end user, for the audience. The only deciding factor whether a Bollywood movie will be a success or not wholly depends on  the number of people who turn out in the movie theatre.The number of people who spend their hard earned money to buy the movie tickets ,to see their favourite movies on the silver screen.

We need to realize that ultimately it is an industry,where making profit is one of the prime motives and concern for any investor.Just like any product manufacturing industry which would  produce those products which the consumers want to use ,film industry will produce content that the audience wants to consume.So as an audience we need to evolve , we need to appreciate talent rather than the glitz and glamour. Trolling anybody on social media platforms would not help a struggling talent to get an equal opportunity. Can blaming big Bollywood production houses ensure that no worthy talent is deprived of an opportunity? When masterpieces like Tumbad is unable to collect money at the box office, then it is the movie going audience who are responsible for it’s loss.

As an audience we need to realize that we have the power to promote and acknowledge talent.Nepotism has it’s existence in many industries, but in spheres like entertainment and politics, the end result is on people’s choice. Just as we would not vote for some one on the basis  of which family the candidate belongs in any elections,we also have this authority to choose whom we want to watch on the silver screen or not.

The fact that the selection process of actors in Bollywood for a movie does lack transparency cannot be denied,but as a responsible audience we need to realize that the choices that we make has a major and a very important impact.The content that we choose to consume and actors that we choose to appreciate is a major determinant of the kind of content that we are provided with.  While consuming content we need to realize that broadening our horizons as an audience is as important as getting entertained.

There is a larger probability to change ourselves than to change the world. The  extent of existence of nepotism in Bollywood can be debated and discussed ,but as an audience we can and should ensure that no worthy talent is deprived of their appreciation and reward.

-Prachi Jha

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