They don’t entertain anymore. They don’t work the box office. Yet, they won’t give up on their non-existent careers
There are stars the audience just can’t get enough of. And then there are those who are directed to the gallows week after week by critics and box-office figures alike. Yet, they go about their business, believing that they are actually entertaining people.
Their self-motivation is why they deserve to be on this list. Here’s a light-hearted, tongue-in-cheek tribute to eight indomitable spirits of Bollywood:
1. Ram Gopal Varma (director-producer-writer)
Last directed: The Attacks Of 26/11, Bhoot Returns (2012), Department (2012)
Upcoming: Satya 2
In the blinding glare of the limelight, many stars tend to forget their humble beginnings, but not Ramu. That’s why, despite having produced and directed flops after flops in the recent years, he continues to hold on to his blockbuster past, during which he directed iconic films like Rangeela (1995), Satya (1998) and Company (2002). Although that time has long past, Ram Gopal Varma ki aag is not easily extinguished.
2. Minissha Lamba (actor)
last seen in: Zilla Ghaziabad, Joker (2012), Hum Tum Shabana (2011)
Upcoming: Hungame Pe Hungama
Nothing is impossible — that’s the lesson for those who have watched Minissha Lamba survive in this film industry. Despite having starred (we’re consciously avoiding the word ‘acted’ here) in a series of forgettable roles, she was miraculously invited to walk the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival in 2011, for the premiere of Woody Allen’s Midnight In Paris. And that, there, as the highlight of her fictional career of eight-odd years.
3. Ameesha Patel (actor)
last seen in: Shortcut Romeo, Race 2, Chatur Singh Two Star (2011)
Upcoming: Bhaiyyaji Superhitt, Desi Magic
Ameesha Patel must be a fan of American author Byron Katie’s work. That’s probably why she takes the writer’s saying — “It’s not your job to like me, it’s mine” — so
seriously. So what if she’s everything that a star aspires not to be? She can plant stories about herself and her imaginary lover boy in the news; and she can afford to plaster her face on massive hoardings around the city.
If that isn’t determination, we don’t know what is.
4. Mallika Sherawat (actor)
last seen in: Kismat Love Paisa Dilli (2012), Tezz (2012)
Upcoming: Dirty Politics
It’s not easy to stand out in an industry so packed with actresses willing to go as far as is necessary to get noticed. And no one knows that better than Mallika — who’s a self-professed Hollywood star now. She has done everything to make it to the news, except her primary job — act. She posed with snakes and even hallucinated about being the first one to kiss on screen and wear a bikini in Bollywood. Obviously, she hasn’t seen Sharmila Tagore or Zeenat Aman in films like An Evening In Paris (1967) and Qurbani (1980) respectively.
5. Harman Baweja (actor)
last seen in: Victory (2009), What’s Your Raashee? (2009), Love Story 2050 (2008)
Upcoming: It’s My Life
You have to give it to him. The man sacrificed his career to give Bollywood its first humongous budget ‘futuristic film’ (it was called Love Story 2050). He even reminded the audience of how wrong one can go with a sports drama (with Victory), urging them to strive for perfection. And his last film, with 12 Priyanka Chopras, was a landmark example for producers, who all went home having learnt that there isn’t always safety in numbers.
6. Vivek Oberoi (actor)
last seen in: Jayantabhai Ki Luv Story, Zilla Ghaziabad, Kismat Love Paisa Dilli (2012)
Upcoming: Krrish 3, Grand Masti
Despite not having delivered a hit in 10 years or so, the good man continues his philanthropic work. And he is perfectly okay being part of movies that don’t do much to elevate his position in the industry. However, they must pay him enough to help sustain his charitable activities. What is a career but for a larger good, right?
7. Preity Zinta (actor)
last seen in: Ishkq in Paris (2013), Heroes (2008), Jhoom Barabar Jhoom (2007), Jaan-E-Mann (2006)
Upcoming: Bhaiyyaji Superhitt
She had the chance to quit when she was at the top of her game (her last hit film was Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, 2006), but unfortunately, the words ‘give up’ don’t exist in Preity Zinta’s dictionary. And just when we thought she had bought a new dictionary and got the hint, she came right back with a dud titled Ishkq In Paris. The film did what it was meant to — showcased her new haircut and her perpetual state of denial.
8. Neil Nitin Mukesh (actor)
last seen in: Players (2012), Shortcut Romeo, 3G, David
Upcoming: Ishqeria, Rum Pum Posshh
You can’t deny the hard work he puts in. He worked so hard to act the life out of his role in 3G, that it put most real actors to shame. He might have an envious lineage — and three first names, but Neil Nitin Mukesh doesn’t have an inkling of what to do in front of the camera. So he ends up trying really hard work but to no avail.
And that brings our list of indomitable spirits of stardom to an end. No offense.