Indian impressionist makes it to America's Got Talent finals
His impression of action star Arnold Schwarzenegger helped him find a place in the hit reality show "America's Got Talent" and now Indian mimic artiste George Ronith has made it to the final round in Hollywood.Updated: Jul 14, 2010 15:17 IST
His impression of action star Arnold Schwarzenegger helped him find a place in the hit reality show "America's Got Talent" and now Indian mimic artiste George Ronith has made it to the final round in Hollywood.
The 58-year-old aspiring actor is among the 48 contestants who will be heading to Hollywood for the final round of the show, which is the biggest talent hunt in the US.
He is now in contention for the big prize of a million dollars and an exclusive show in Las Vegas.
An overjoyed Ronith was shown pulling a Arnold impression with Nick Cannon, the host of the show, when he was told of the good news.
In the first round of auditions in Los Angeles Ronith introduced himself by saying, "I was about to make it in India as an actor so I left India and moved to the United States."
He went on to imitate stars like Marlon Brando, Clint Eastwood and Sean Connery, but it was his impersonation of former action hero and current California governor Schwarzenegger, that got the crowd cheering.
But his performance divided the judge's opinion.
One of the judges, Piers Morgan, voted against Ronith going through to the second round in Las Vegas and called the aspiring actor, "the worst impressionist" he had ever seen.
But the other two judges Sharon Osbourne and Howie Mandel liked the performance. "I think you are very unique," said Sharon Osbourne, a television personality and wife of rocker Ozzy Osbourne.
Some American viewers seem to agree with Morgan and expressed surprise that Ronith went through to the finals.
"To describe Ronith's act as crap would be doing it a service, this was the weakest, most amateur comedy routine I've seen in a long time," wrote a blogger.
Unlike "American Idol", which is exclusively a singing competition, "America's Got Talent" is a show open to all sorts of act from singers and dancers to gymnasts, magicians and ventriloquists.
A smattering of Indian acts have graced American and British talent shows in the past few years. The performances usually tend to be groups performing Bollywood dances to popular numbers. Most of them, so far, have not gotten very far in the competition.
First Published: Jul 14, 2010 15:14 IST