New actors facing publicity problems

>> Saturday, August 1, 2009

Ranbir Kapoor

Communication skills are entirely lacking in the generation that has now come in. Publicists are employed tdo fix up appointments during the time of a film’s release. I don’t buy that. Why should we make ourselves available whenever a star needs or demands our presence? This may be suitable protocol for star-journalist relations in the West. It doesn’t work here. We Indians are too emotional to be professional about our entertainer. We love Jaya and Amitabh’s son and Kamal Haasan and Sarika’s daughter unconditionally.When Abhishek was to be launched I was part of the whole process. It wasn’t just the Bachchans. Even director JP Dutta was, and is, a close friend. The senior AB dialed my number and handed the phone to his son.I was the first to interview both Abhishek and Kareena.And they still remember it.

It doesn’t matter who first interviewed Ranbir, Imran or Sonam.They couldn’t care less. To them the media is a necessary evil, to be avoided as much as possible.To be borne otherwise. One of the star-kids actually tells you how to write your interview and to avoid using the interview in bits and pieces, please.I’d rather see it all together,” instructs the star-kid. Konkona Sen-Sharma whose temperamental mom is the most charming interviewee, gets edgy when you ask a personal question. “I don’t see the relevance of what you are asking,” she told me. Ouch. But I do see the relevance of your performances. Another star-kid sauntered on to the silver screen this week. I remember Shruti Haasan as a child, albeit a very grownup child, solemn and serious way beyond her years.

Once, her father Kamal Haasan and I were driving down to a premiere with Shruti and her dad asked which among the two of us she thought was older.Grow up, guys. That’s such a juvenile question,” Shruti was so grownup even then.And now to see her emerge from a pool in a bikini in her first film was quite embarrassing. And unnecessary. All those filmmakers who claim that bikinis are “what the script demands” should check out a pool closest to their ivory towers. And put their daughters into it.The two-piece is most unnecessary, and that too for a child-woman barely out of her teens. Ironically, most of these production houses that dig seeing bathing nymphs emerge from the waters don’t have women-folk from their own family working in the entertainment industry.I mean, have you heard of any girl from Yash Chopra’s clan being in the film business?

Isn’t it strange, male actors’ sons head for their father’s profession when they are barely into puberty, but who has heard of Sunil Dutt, Manoj Kumar, Dharmendra or Rajendra Kumar’s daughters choosing to become actors? Maybe these girls just didn’t want a film career. Or maybe their fathers had seen too many of their heroines emerge from the pool dripping for the salivating masses.


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