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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Bollywood today: I do not think we can claim to be in the same league as Hollywood on exploitation

krrish-movie.jpgBollywood’s success is leading to Western greed, Reuters reports from Mumbai in the dispatch, “Bollywood toys with spinoffs.” “For decades, Bollywood was happy just to sell filmgoers a 20-rupee (US50c) cinema ticket. Now studios, tentatively evolving from dynastic family firms to Hollywood-style companies with a taste for merchandising, are increasingly trying to market everything from movie hero action figures to mobile phone ringtones of film soundtrack snippets. Krrish, Bollywood’s all-singing, all-dancing, black-caped answer to Superman, was perhaps the industry’s most full-on attempt yet to cash in on merchandising…” After seeing 2006’s biggest Bollywood entry, “children could nag their parents to buy them Krrish dolls, Krrish superhero mask, Krrish dartboards, Krrish Rubik’s Cubes, and Krrish school stationery. It is all a contrast to a a few years ago when old-fashioned revenge melodramas played in often dilapidated cinemas… Studios and analysts say the industry is ambitiously aiming at following Hollywood with “media convergence” – the buzzword for plastering a product across a wide array of media such as television, radio, the internet, video games and mobile phones… “The Indian film industry has definitely opened up to exploring various innovative revenue streams,” Siddharth Roy Kapur, marketing and communications chief of… a leading Bollywood studio, said. “However, I do not think we can claim to be in the same league as Hollywood on exploitation of our content amongst non South Asian audiences.” [More stats at the link.]

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“As these stories continue to break, in the weeks since women have said they were harassed and abused by Harvey Weinstein, which was not the birth of a movement but an easy and highly visible shorthand for decades of organizing against sexual harassment that preceded this moment, I hope to gain back my time, my work. Lately, though, I have noticed a drift in the discourse from violated rights to violated feelings: the swelled number of reporters on the beat, the burden on each woman’s story to concern a man “important” enough to report on, the detailed accounting of hotel robes and incriminating texts along with a careful description of what was grabbed, who exposed what, and how many times. What I remember most, from “my story” is how small the sex talk felt, almost dull. I did not feel hurt. I had no pain to confess in public. As more stories come out, I like to think that we would also believe a woman who said, for example, that the sight of the penis of the man who promised her work did not wound her, and that the loss she felt was not some loss of herself but of her time, energy, power.”
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