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From the Editor’s desk: Why Bollywood needs to stop apologising!

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From the Editor’s desk: Why Bollywood needs to stop apologising! – There were sensible voices too, but because they have better things to do than reason with idiots on social media, all Varun, Saif and Karan heard was: Shame, Shame, Shame. Like Cersei Lannister.


Saif Ali Khan (R) and director/producer Karan Johar perform on stage during the IIFA Awards of the 18th International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Festival at the MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, on July 15, 2017. (AFP – Jewel Samad)

I was really disappointed when Varun Dhawan said “sorry” for being part of a joke on IIFA award stage. I was angry when Karan Johar, and then Saif Ali Khan did the same. They were apologetic for being part of a small skit on ‘nepotism rocks.’ There was so much white noise on Twitter, they took their words back. There were sensible voices too, but because they have better things to do than reason with idiots on social media, all Varun, Saif and Karan heard was: Shame, Shame, Shame. Like Cersei Lannister. But they didn’t have her grit and gumption to defend or even explain themselves. Scared without reason!

The trouble with Bollywood is, they are so scared that every little thing they do will affect their film releases, that they are too willing to bend at the knees. Actors would be a lot less apologetic, if they knew that the paying audience doesn’t care about anything they say or do on their own time. A case in point – Sanjay Dutt. He is STILL a sought-after star. There is a biopic made on him by one of the biggest directors in the country, and it stars the best actor in the country. B-Towners, chew on that, before you type s-o-r-r-y on your phones next time! Sorry, Not Sorry!

Sadly, the very same people who had a problem with what this trio said on stage of an award show, cheer when Hollywood folks poke fun at themselves, colleagues and their fraternity. KJo, Varun and Saif did a skit. And let me highlight to the morons who were offended, the they were poking fun at themselves. If you get disgruntled by watching a skit during an award ceremony, stop watching. Because that is the tone of the show. You won’t go to comedy show expecting Sri Sri Ravi Shankar on stage, you don’t go to an Anup Jalota concert expecting a roast. So don’t expect satsang at an award ceremony. Develop a SOH!

So, a sea of feminists got up to protest against the dig at Kangana Ranaut. Why? “Because three powerful men from Bollywood ganged up against a poor actress?” So it’s okay to make jokes about men, and not about women? Where’s the equality in that? There were rants about how it was misogynistic. I am going to use the same argument that Mack Raden did when Seth MacFarlane was accused of being a sexist during the Oscar ceremony (2013), “There’s a major difference between jokes being made at the expense of women (completely acceptable) and jokes being made specifically to put women down.” And women who can’t tell the difference are giving the rest of us a bad name. Please develop a sense of humour, ASAP. Bullseye on B-Town.

Do you recall the furore over host Seth MacFarlane’s joke at Oscar night in 2013? His jokes were sexist and misogynistic. He was trashed by media (he waited it out, and things went back to normal). Ed Sheeran got abused over the weekend for his appearance on season 7 of Games of Thrones. (He deleted his Twitter account, and returned after two days). There was an FIR filed against AIB co-founder Tanmay Bhat for allegedly ‘insulting’ the Prime Minister through a tweet. (They didn’t ask for forgiveness, and the FIR has been taken back.)

The message is simple: Stop being so remorseful. The more you grovel, the more you will be bullied. Wrong advise. The problem with actors and filmmakers is that they only talk to other actors and filmmakers. They are cut away from the rest of the world, so they rely on social media for information, and that is the most warped view of whatever is happening in the real world. It is a wrong measure to gauge reality. A lot of people I talked to, about the ‘nepotism rocks’ gig thought it was silly and some found it funny. Not one was peeved! But the trio have releases coming up – Karan (Ittefaq), Saif (Kaalakaandi) and Varun (Judwaa 2) and so they thought it would be best to say sorry.

My advice: Next time, better be safe than sorry.

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