There is an unmistakable tendency among a certain section of showbiz to make their presence felt through stories about their (imaginary) amorous escapades rather than through their (non-existent) work. While one applauds the marketing acumen of these self-styled news makers one also wonders what happened to that fast-fading breed of stars who maintained they’d let their work speak for them! Here’s looking at the prominent gasbags of 2012:
Rana Daggubati: All through 2012 we kept hearing tall, taller and tallest tales of Rana’s romantic exploits. Trisha, Bipasha, Nathalia, Shruti…the list of the women he was “seem” with is endless. Each linkup was followed for months by vehement denials and seemingly embarrassed protests of breached privacy. All a hoax, it turns out. It was one of the women whom Rana was linked with, who split the beans about his Casanova image. Said the alleged girlfriend, “When I first saw reports of Rana and I being a couple I was horrified. Everyone knows he’s going to marry a girl chosen by his family. I hardly met him a few times.” This actress snooped around and discovered that all the tales of Rana’s rumoured relationships were sourced to his marketing team. Apart from these linkups Rana was only seen in Ram Gopal Varma’s hideous ‘Department’. Not one Hindi film in his kitty since then. It figures.
Mallika Sherawat: She remained the queen of self-generated hype for the 8th year in a row. Ever since Mallika chanced upon a paper-prone stardom she has been ensuring a renewed self-promotional shelf life through pictures clicked with various American icons including, ahem ahem, President Obama. But do Obama and Antonio Banderas really know about the existence of Ms Sherawat? According to an actor who has been doing considerable work in the US Mallika’s pictures are “random fan photos clicked at dos where the celebs don’t even know whom they’re being clicked with.” Whatever the truth to this allegation, Mallika continues to build herself as an international star. In her head, of course. She speaks about American icons and film projects in the US with enthusiastic familiarity, as though she is straddling stardom in Bollywood and Hollywood with equal ease. In point of fact Mallika’s career in Bollywood has touched rock-bottom with her 2012 release ‘Kismat Dilli Love Paisa’ (KLPD) which in terms of the boxoffice was the new-age equivalent of ‘Rani Mera Naam’ in the 1970s. Mallika has now signed a Bokadia film where she plays the slain nurse Bhanwari Devi, and has apparently announced to Bokadia she is willing to st*** as much as he wants. Skin-deep stardom? Not even that. Mallika is a hoax bomb.
Nargis Fakhri: When Rock Star was in production Ranbir Kapoor had raved, “Forget the popular awards for Best Debutant, Nargis will win all the Best Actress awards.” When the film released the pretty-pouted Pakistani-Czech actress proved to be an acting dud. Not one project came her way thereafter, ‘Khiladi 786’ was snatched away with the feeble explanation that she didn’t look like Mithun Chakaborty’s sister. As if Asin who replaced her did! Hee hee. All through the year Nargis was known for being seen in public places with eligible heroes, first with Ranbir, then Shahid then Uday Chopra. We hear Ranbir decided to stay away from all things Nargis when he realized where the stories of their linkup were coming from.
Angela Jonsson: The Kingfisher calendar girl’s career nosedived even before it took off. All through the year we heard of her linkups. One of her alleged love-interests confessed, “It was just a random group of friends where we were clicked together. The next morning I was horrified to see pictures of us together in the papers. Not done!” Not surprisingly actors became wary of being seen with Ms Jonsson. Salman Khan bravely took her under his wings. He does love the underdogs, our Salman does. But now their proposed film together ‘Sher Khan’ has undergone a change of title and cast. We hear Angela may not fit the bill at all. Sad. Maybe she could take lessons on aspirational stardom from Amisha Patel.
Shrish Kunder: He spoke of his film ‘Joker’ as if it was Raj Kapoor’s ‘Mera Naam Joker’ revisited. He claimed he walked out of directing Sajid Nadiadwala’s ‘Kick’ when in fact the walk-out theory was a face-saving device conceived in Nadiadwala’s office. Shirish spent most of 2012 spreading bumper-sticker wisdom on twitter, and that included barbed comments on Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Ra.One’ which landed him on the floor in a pub with Shah Rukh staring down. Of course in a week, the ignominy was forgotten. They all kissed and made up. Who kissed whom, we’ll never really know. At the end of the year Shirish had gone back to his original vocation. No, not insulting people. But film editing. For Rensil d’Silva’s ‘Unglee’, Hopefully it’s not the middle one.
Ranveer Singh: As far as gasbags go, this one takes the cake. And makes us quake. Ranveer Singh’s aggressive self-promotion makes Vivek Overoi look low-profile in comparison. The minute this wannabe Oberoi sees an A-list actress he declares himself to be her fan and then asks his pr machinery to send link-stories to the media. Ranveer’s latest imaginary link-up is Deepika Padukone. The lady is apparently left red-faced by Mr Singh’s unwarranted attention. Being too polite to refute his exuberance Deepika has decided to smile her way through their film together ‘Ram Leela’. The pretension to affability could well earn her the epithet of Sham Leela. In 2012 Ranveer had no releases. But he was constantly in the news. Watta way to grow.
Veena Malik: And finally Mademoiselle Malik …ah! She makes Rakhi Sawant, Poonam Pandey and Sheryln Chopra look like novices in the art of self-marketing. Sample this: somewhere in the middle of all her come-look-at-me gimmicks Veena one day decided to “disappear” from the sets of a movie that is unlikely to be released. Two days and 4 item songs later she turned up claiming she was tense and terribly worked up and needed to be “alone”.. Wonder what she would do if no one had bothered to look for her! Veena Malik is a congentinal attention-seeker and makes no bones about. Her movie career in Bollywood is of practically nil value. But she makes her presence felt in unorthodox ways which may not endear her to the radicals. But boy, the b***s don’t hurt the hits on the internet.