B'wood dances into Oxford Dictionary
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B'wood dances into Oxford Dictionary

Bollywood is now an an English word in the Oxford English Dictionary, the keeper of Oxonian words and accent.

india Updated: Dec 27, 2003 23:19 IST

The showbiz's glamour and mystique that has obsessed millions have now spilled over on the pages of a new edition of Oxford English Dictionary. No wonder Bollywood has been christened as an English word. Another milestone, another defining moment for the Indian film industry.

It has seemingly sung and danced its way along with A-list and Academy Awards and Honey Traps into the Oxford English Dictionary, the undisputed keeper of Oxonian accent and words. There is a picture of two starlets, one in a "virginal" white sari and another in shorts and tight-fitting shirt holding hands. A union of the west with the east.

The stars like Shabana Azmi or Big B or socialite and writer Shobha De may not like the word Bollywood, and they surely have justifiable reasons for disparaging the use of the word when talking about Indian films or its heroes and heroines, but the word Bollywood is a natural corollary of the popularity of the films from Bombay.

It is born of a common liking for the likes of Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham, Lagaan, Devdas and such like by both the English and Asian movie buffs.

A major contribution in its adoption has been that of Bollywood Celebrations at Selfridges two summers ago and the rather surprising acceptance of Bombay Dreams by the snooty West End audiences. The musical has brought out not only AR Rahman's genius but also given an insight into Mumbai's film world.

There is no way that you can erase the word and substitute it with Indian film Industry, said an exhibitor. "Bollywood denotes glamour, colour and a fantasy world even the upper stiff lip society in the west lusts for."

Lifestyle choices of the stars have also made their way into the new publication. Pilates, rehab, docusoaps, Reiki and G-spot, all of them are now in. The dictionary also includes things that make many choose a life away from the spotlight, such as "deep vein thrombosis" and "search engines". Yardies, gangstas, tree-huggers and peacenik have also got their way in.

The illustrated dictionary from Dorling Kindersley is to be released this week and contains 187,000 concise definitions and 4500 full-colour images.

First Published: Dec 23, 2003 19:47 IST