it, when the theme of Bollywood comes to mind, the first
thing that pops up are couples running around coconut
trees, singing their love to each other. Then shame
Keep up with the times will you? Nowadays they have
upgraded to magically teleporting themselves in scenic
locations and the ability to make passer-bys dance with
them in harmony with their singing.
But seriously, how many really know about this mega
film industry in India? Apparently being the the worlds
largest film industry for which mainly supported by
a vast film-going Indian public, Indian films have been
gaining increasing popularity to the rest of the world.
Crossover films like BEND IT LIKE
BECKHAM, MONSOON WEDDING and LAGAAN (Oscar nominated
for Best Foreign Language film) has come into the worlds
acceptance and it won't be long till Bollywood becomes
as mainstream, as HK and French films.
India is a large country where many languages are spoken.
Each of the languages supports its own film industry:
The Hindi film industry, based in Mumbai, formerly Bombay,
is called Bollywood (a melding
of Hollywood and Bombay). The Bollywood
industry is the largest in terms of films produced and
box office receipts, just as Hindi/Hindustani speakers
outnumber speakers of other Indian languages (at
least within India). Many workers in other
regional industries, once established, will move to
Bollywood for greater exposure or opportunity.
a rule of thumb of such genre tend to be :
• Long — 3 hours, with
• Musical — action
is periodically interrupted by song-and-dance routines.
Good movies use the routines to move the story forward;
mediocre movies have them only because the audience
demands them. Songs are sung by professional play-back
singers and lip-synched by dancing actors and actresses.
In some cases, the actors/actress have the ability
to also sing, makes it a plus point for the movie.
• Melodramatic, sentimental, of mixed
genre — A mixture of romance, comedy,
action, suspense, etc.
ishq, muhabbat, prem
also used to mean 'I'
(in order of ascending formality)
jaanam, jaan, jaanejaan
chori chori, chupke se
Bollywood's visual style is also infiltrating Hollywood
sensibilities like MOULIN ROUGE
and CHICAGO but this can
also be argued to whom it all started as in the Hollywood
Gene Kelly era where it seems to back it up perfectly.
As Bollywood goes Hollywood, Hollywood directors and
producers are also looking towards India. Salman Khan
will start working on a Hollywood production - MARIGOLD.
The film is a musical romantic comedy written and directed
by US filmmaker Willard Carroll. Budgeted at under $10
million, it has been dubbed as Bollywood-Hollywood collaboration
and will be shot in both English and Hindi languages.
MARIGOLD will be filmed in Mumbai, Goa and Rajasthan.
Aishwarya Rai's BRIDE AND PREJUDICE
is also the hot international talking point with a Bollywood
connection, Mallika Sherawat has signed on to star in
a Jackie Chan film and newcomer Deepal Shah has been
signed to appear in an international music video that
will feature sexy pop star Beyonce Knowles.
US cinema major-20th Century Fox is reportedly in talks
for an English version of the film, MUNNABHAI M.B.B.S
(Sanjay Dutt's hit film). The film details the efforts
of a goon trying to become a doctor to live up to his
So in that saying, let the Bollywood saga continue,
Presenting a friendly FAQ to aid a better understanding
so that you can fully enjoy a Bollywood movie.
don't the characters ever
plays to a diverse range of people, from the illiterate
and provincial to the worldly and urban. Ideas of
morality differ widely from group to group. Why
include a kiss when you can easily leave it out
and avoid the risk of offending customers?
does it mean when you tug on your ears?
tug your ears in a variety of social situations,
but mainly when apologizing, as a physical admission
of wrong-doing and as a demonstration of repentance.
does it mean when you touch someone's feet?
someone's feet is a sign of respect usually accorded
solely to elders. Why is this considered respectful,
you ask? Well, Hindu theology, and Indian culture
in general, holds the feet to be the most polluted
part of the body. This is why you take off your
shoes upon entering a temple, and also why you should
never point the soles of your feet at someone.
d oes it mean when you press your palms together?
can equate this to a handshake if you'd like, but
pressing your palms together connotes a respect
the handshake no longer does (unless you consider
the significance of refusing to shake hands, the
gravest of all insults, which accordingly implies
that a handshake does, indeed, show respect).
What does it mean when you wear red stuff in the
part of your hair?
unlike the bindi, has one clear meaning - she is
married, and her husband is alive. If she were to
be widowed, she would cease to wear vermilion in
her part. Legend has it that this ceremony began
due to a slew of brides being kidnapped at the wedding
ceremony. The groom would fight for his bride, and
if he slayed the would-be abductor, he would smear
his bride's part with the fallen man's blood. Hindi
filmmakers love this: watch a few action movies
and you're sure to see the hero smearing the villain's
blood into his beloved's hair.
does it mean when you wave a lamp on a tray?
this occurs in two different contexts in films:
when greeting a guest, and when worshipping God.
as a way of acknowledging the sacred within them;
since guests are considered to be sacred, greeting
them this way acknowledges their divine nature and
conveys what an honor it is for them to visit.