Actor Ranvir Shorey has been vocal about the functioning of Bollywood in the last couple of days. In wake of the tragic death of Sushant Singh Rajput, Ranvir has repeatedly spoken about the ‘gang’ in Bollywood and how it operates. In an interview with Times of India, to I am Kalam director Nila Madhab Panda, a fellow outsider, he expanded on the subject.
Speaking about his angst, Ranvir explained, “Right now, the debate going on is about mainstream Bollywood, it is not about the Indian or Hindi film industry. It is about that group within a group, the top of the pyramid of mainstream Bollywood. Every actor aspires to be at the top, what happens is that you hit a glass ceiling, or you enter the gatekeeper zone where approval of a select few people can give you access to the top, otherwise you keep working for smaller rewards.”
Ranvir agreed with Anurag Kapshyap, who had earlier said that Sushant had sought validation from Yash Raj films. “Taking Sushant’s example, he had been doing very well on his own. He had blockbusters under his belt but, like even Anurag (Kashyap) mentioned in one of his interviews, he wanted validation from this group, this cabal. These people wield a lot of power in terms of distribution and exhibition of cinema and marketing budgets. Seeking validation from these people is what I think went wrong for him.”
Nila Madhab agreed with Ranvir on the issue of validation and said how despite making a film that everybody loved, he could not make it big in terms of business, as he too did not have the validation of the group Ranvir spoke of.
Ranvir explained how this group has tremendous power but added that with power, responsibility or grace should also naturally follow, but said this group has neither. Ranvir went on to expand on how the group operates – how they isolate a person, how friends leave and how all this affects an individual’s social life.
Nila Madhab then asked him as to how would each of them (outsiders) find their way around this vexed issue. Looking into the future, Ranvir said in matters of disparity in distribution and exhibition, the streaming giants will play an equaliser to an extent but it would not change the world order once the theatres re-open.
Ranvir said: “The hoo-ha on social media with hashtags is not a reflection of what is happening in the real world. Once theatres open up, we might see a small difference in the disparity, the desperation and the despair that exists – that will be because of the presence of streaming platforms as a safety valve. But I have a feeling that the theatre game is going to go back to the same. I am cynical man now. I have see too much. Nothing really changes.”
Ranvir has worked with Nila Madhab in his film, Kadvi Hawa.
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