Bollywood. The name is easily to be associated with bling. The sparkle and freshness of new love and rebelliousness within you. The hot patriotism and that awkward, yet happy family. And the happily ever afters. The Rajs and Simrans. The Anjalis and the Rahuls. The Kabir Khans, the Auros and the three idiots.
Being bought up with an overdose of the Bollywood tamasha, I had expected a lot from it in the future too. I believed as a child that the world meant romancing in Switzerland and finding the love of my life, who would actually be my best friend since college days. The image kept breaking every time I grew up and realized how much was it was fake. And with every new realization my heart broke, one piece at a time.
And then there were award shows. Those amazing performances by people I adored. I always wondered how could my favourite actor be oh-so-funny? And how could they all dance with such perfection, not even forgetting one step? How could they crack such funny jokes and not even falter once? How could they just crack you up alright? Weren’t they just absolutely spiffing?
But it wasn’t until last year, when I read my favourite humor columnist’s blog that I found out that everything was scripted. There went my heart, broken into another piece. They apparently hired people to write all their jokes. But thank you, that was that. We did that for out school programs too- make funny people fill-in. But that was, as I found out only this month, that this was only a minuscule part of it!
A friend of mine who’s into event management did a big award show this year. One of the most awaited, and one of my favourites. Also one of the oldest, in its 58th edition this year. She told me such news, I didn’t know what to believe in anymore. She told me that every little joke was scripted and nothing was original. Even a ‘Hello, sir’ was scripted and it is all shown through placards and TV screens. Moreover some performances were shot after a couple of days when the actors were free. Little mistakes were edited and re-shot.Everything was scripted and edited!
It was then that I realized what the true meaning of acting was. Weren’t we as students much better at this? At least it was original. All the praises, didn’t we deserve them? How much make up do they have to put up to woo us all?
I realized that maybe I was the fool here, believing that showbiz was real. That life was supposed to turn out that way. Probably not. Probably this secret wasn’t supposed to be out. We are all supposed to close our eyes and not question the truth.
So the next time I hear that my favourite actor is actually a chain-smoker and doesn’t sleep, I’ll try not to be surprised. The next time I hear that my favourite actress does drugs, I’ll try not to be surprised. The next time I hear that that actor was drunk on stage and they tries to cover it up, I’ll try not to be surprised. The next time I hear that couch-casting exists, I’ll try not to be surprised. Because isn’t this all illusion anyway? As if.
And how much we suffer is a mark of how much we have been hurt by this realization.