Gulshan Grover, the Bollywood villain whose wickedness and deceit earned him the hatred of millions of cinema lovers, rues that Indian films fail to break from the good- trumps-evil formula because audiences want the bad guy to die.
Grover, whose onscreen villainy earned him the sobriquet "Badman", says Bollywood has failed to create memorable negative characters like Hollywood's Hannibal Lecter or Norman Bates in Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho.
Generations of formulaic Hindi revenge dramas and romances have found their happy ending in the death of the villain, who has rarely been portrayed as the central character.
Even when top Bollywood superstars have played the anti-hero they have had to die.
"Western audiences have much developed minds to sit through and admire a bad guy-centric film like Hannibal, whereas in India we have the concept of good must triumph drilled into us by our elders," Grover told Reuters.
"Everyone here prefers to see a mushy romance in which the hero saves the situation and kills the bad guy, than see a villain taking all the accolades."
Grover, 52, is among a few Bollywood villains who have carved a niche for themselves in the Indian audience's imagination with their trademark mannerisms and deceit. He has also acted in about 20 international films.
Grover says though Indian actors were known globally, Western audiences had yet to differentiate between films from Bollywood, the Hindi-language film industry which is the world's largest by ticket sales, and films about India.
"The exposure of Indian actors has increased no doubt but the West still cannot differentiate a Bollywood movie from a film that has little bit of Indian content," he said. "For them any film that has India in it is Bollywood."
The actor is currently shooting for two international projects -- Prisoners of the Sun in which he plays an antique expert and a doctor in Blind Ambition.