SSR’s Suicide: The Case For Karan Johar & Aditya Chopra
While Bollywood & the country is shaken by Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide, Karan Johar & Aditya Chopra are squarely blamed for Sushant’s death. But are they guilty? Read our article to find out!
Firstly we would like to state we like the rest of the country are totally shaken by SSR’s untimely death. Just like the rest, we had no clue about Sushant’s struggles as far as his mental health is concerned.
Fans & trolls have been pinning the blame squarely on Karan Johar & Aditya Chopra. We tell you why it is wrong to blindly blame them without ascertaining the facts. We also assure our readers that WE HAVE NOT BEEN PAID OR ASKED BY ANYONE TO WRITE THIS ARTICLE
Bollywood Is Just Like Any Big Corporation/ College Campus
Just like any big office or any college, Bollywood too is divided into camps. Any insider or outsider has to find a place for himself in one of the big camps. Just like how students hang out with only their group in college & are selective about whom they allow into the group, Bollywood too is very particular about who is part of the camp. I have seen in offices too, how employees have lunch & hang out only with people who are part of their group. While your marks or performance in exams are not defining factors when it comes to your college group(your taste in music/movies looks matters), your appraisals or performance does matter when it comes to groups in offices. Nobody in the office wants a loser in their group. All the people who don’t fulfill these criteria are snubbed if they ever try to enter the group. Every group in college/office has a leader who has the final say when it comes to deciding on who makes the cut & who doesn’t.
Dharma & YRF are undoubtedly the biggest camps in Bollywood. Everybody wants to be either a Dharma camp insider or a YRF camp member. Out of the lakhs that come to the city with movie star dreams YRF shortlists barely 3-4 male stars & offers them a contract. While their big-budget movies have established stars in them, barely one movie is offered to an outsider every year at YRF. Now when there is such a huge demand-supply gap it is natural for the big boss to develop a god complex. The hero is then chosen on the basis of not just talent, but his equation with Aditya Chopra as well. But once you are offered a YRF contract & you sign it, you have to take Aditya Chopra’s permission before doing a movie outside the studio. YRF even gets a cut out of every assignment that you take up with producers outside other than YRF. If you dare to cross Aditya Chopra or wiggle out of the contract, the doors of YRF will be permanently shut. Just like how Dhoni or now Kohli can make or break careers in cricket, YRF or Dharma too has that power.
I haven’t heard about Dharma making their actors sign contracts. While YRF has given more heroes/heroines who are outsiders, Dharma has given its share of technicians ie directors, editors, etc to the fraternity. But Karan Johar has been guilty of launching the most number of nepo kids in leading roles.
Both Karan Johar & Aditya Chopra are known to hold grudges. Both won’t spare a celeb if they mess with them. But then isn’t that the case with any powerful politician or corporate honcho or even a sports captain? Can you be a part of the Indian cricket team if you mess with Virat Kohli or a BCCI big-shot? A right-wing journo has been subjected to 100 FIR’s & long interrogations for simply calling out the leader of a party by her original name. Left-wing journos too have been at the receiving of politician’s anger.
There Are Filmmakers Beyond Dharma/ YRF
There are many production houses beyond YRF & Dharma. T-Series, Excel, Filmkraft, Sajid Nadiadwala, Vashu Bhaganani, Kumar Mangat & many more produce movies regularly. If Dharma or YRF closes their doors, aspiring actors can approach these production houses. Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgan, etc survived in Bollywood for a long time without getting projects from YRF or Dharma. Ajay Devgan has survived for almost 30years without working for either of them ever.
It is unclear why all the others too closed their doors on Sushant.
Why Karan Is Not Completely Guilty
Imagine that you are a big corporate honcho, who has 2-3 odd vacancies for plum posts in your company. While you are interviewing people who have applied for the job, your influential friends too are calling you up. They want you to give their kids a break. You call their kids for the interview. After the interview is over, you assess all the candidates, you feel that there are 6-7 candidates who stood out. Out of the 6-7 candidates, two are your friend’s kids. You have met these kids at family functions & have an equation with them. They too were coached by their parents to suck up to you, as you are a big-shot. Who will you offer the job? Will you reject the friend’s kids? Let’s be honest, most of us would offer the job to the friend’s kids & earn the influential friend’s favor, only to encash it later. Isn’t this behavior prevalent across the country? Why single out Karan?
Koffee With Karan
Karan Johar’s show – Koffee With Karan too has been at the receiving end of public anger. When you are okay with a YouTuber roasting other celebs getting millions of views & subscribers, then why are you angry with Karan & his coterie getting together & making fun of others? Wasn’t it the audiences who saw every episode for its catty remarks, gossip, humor & made it a top-rated show? Isn’t the show a reflection of us as a society?
Be it Ayushmann Khurana or Rajkummar Rao or Kangana Ranaut or Kriti Sanon or Deepika or any outsider who has made a mark for himself, will any of them give it in writing that they won’t allow their kids to enter Bollywood because they hate nepotism? Amitabh Bachchan, Dharmendra, Rajesh Khanna, Jeetendra & many more were also outsiders at one point of time. Now their kids are able to enjoy the fruits of their labor. We too inherit properties/wealth from our parents just because we are born to them. Isn’t that nepotism? You passing on any work to a family friend too is a form of nepotism.
Everyone enjoyed Kangana’s rant against nepotism. We too retweeted it. But isn’t hiring her sister Rangoli as a manager instead of a professional, nepotism? While we support her statements on Sanjay Dutt, we don’t agree with her take on nepotism.
Like in the previous point about the corporate honcho scenario, producers give a break to an insider-only if they feel that he/she is talented. If you are not talented you will not get movie offers after 1-2 movies flopping badly. If you are appreciated for your performance, then there are chances of producers still considering you but if the audience rejects you then you are forgotten. Apart from Abhishek Bachchan, Sooraj Pancholi & Tushar Kapoor I can’t recollect any actor getting more than 1-2 chances to make it. While Alia, Ranbir, Ranveer, Kareena etc are hugely successful, nobody thinks highly of Sonam, Sonakshi, Athiya, Suraj Pancholi, Aayush Sharma etc. Although all of them are insiders. Being an insider doesn’t guarantee success.
Let’s not forget that there is a certain amount of curiosity regarding the debut film of a star kid. Fans of SRK are eagerly awaiting Aryan Khan, Suhana Khan, Ibrahim Ali Khan, Aryaman Deol’s debut movies. These movies get a good opening because of the curiosity factor. Producers know this & that explains why they are eager to launch star kids. It all comes down to sheer economics!
Bollywood Is A Business
People forget that Bollywood is a business. One flop can wipe out profits earned from 6-7 movies. Take the case of Boney Kapoor who never really recovered from Roop Ki Rani… flopping. There are many others who went bankrupt after their movies flopped. Bollywood is a very high-risk game.
Karan’s father – Yash Johar had to sell off his properties to pay off creditors after several of his movies flopped. Yash Chopra too faced a severe financial crunch in the late 80’s. The family of Yash Chopra’s elder brother – B.R Chopra, who made Mahabharat & several memorable movies is broke. Karan Johar himself is going through a financial crisis. YRF too was in financial doldrums till War released. The success of War has got them out of their financial mess. So you can’t blame them for milking their actors. Nobody will care for them the day they go bankrupt. They are very well aware of this fact
Bollywood is truly capitalist. If you are loved by the audiences, producers will lineup outside your house. Money is the name of the game. Everybody wants to make money to finance their extravagant lifestyle. Irrespective of your religion, caste, color of your skin, nationality if the audiences love you, you will be bombarded with scripts & movie offers. Sadly the opposite is also true. If your movies flop, then no one will give a f&*k.
Nobody has extra money to blow up on talentless actors. Nobody will make a movie with an actor or director they don’t believe in. When Karan Johar or YRF signed SSR, they must have thought that investing in him would give them big returns.
If rumors are to be believed SSR & Aditya Chopra had a huge fight over Paani & SSR not being allowed to act in Ram Leela. On the other hand, YRF allowed Ranveer(another YRF product) to act in Ram Leela. SSR had a huge fight with Karan after he refused to promote Drive. Karan’s decision of not giving Drive a theatrical release did not go down well with SSR. Like I have mentioned in my articles earlier, a theatrical release requires spending huge amounts on promotions. Karan probably thought that spending on promoting Drive was a lost cause. The movie received severe backlash when it released on an online platform. Both are right from their perspectives.
What Karan May Have Done Wrong
It is rumored that Karan used to call up filmmakers & persuade them to not sign up Sushant. Aditya Chopra made it clear that Sushant will never be a part of any of the upcoming YRF productions.
While we can give YRF the benefit of doubt, Karan is guilty if he indeed did call up filmmakers & asked them not to sign Sushant.
Karan Johar has mentioned in his biography how he is subjected to a lot of hate, especially on social media for his sexual preferences. He himself used to get bullied a lot in school & college for being effeminate. He has severe body image issues. Farah Khan too claimed how he criticized anybody & everybody when he came to her party. All these are signs of insecurity. But all this doesn’t justify his behavior of being catty towards celebs whose movies are flopping or are not sophisticated. He should stop instigating other celebs to make fun of celebs he is not fond of on his chat show, especially if the said celeb is not doing well. It will be fun to see if he can poke fun of a Salman Khan or an Akshay Kumar. It is annoying to see him question a celeb’s opinion if they mention that another celeb is more talented than Ranbir( He asked Vidya Balan who is more talented among Ranbir, Aditya Roy Kapoor in rapid-fire round. When Vidya chose ARK, Karan was like “C’mon that’s because he is family). Can’t they have a different opinion? This, in a nutshell, tells you why Bollywood celebs sounds like sheep when it comes to comments on political or sensitive matters. Speaking your mind can draw the ire of Bollywood big-shots. The same holds true for Hollywood as well.
It also needs to be probed whether Karan was aware of Sushant’s depression. If he attacked Sushant despite knowing that he was going through severe depression, then he was wrong.
We Too Are To Be Blamed
It is extremely disheartening to see the comments people leave on the social media handles of celebs. Where does so much hate stem from? Why pull down another actor just because your favorite actor is someone else. If you don’t have a good thing to say about a celeb then please don’t post it on his/her social media handle at least. The same people who mocked SSR on social media are now baying for Karan Johar & Aditya Chopra’s blood. The same people will make fun of a politician or a cricketer on social media platforms without ever wondering how the celeb might feel after reading those comments. The people who watch download movies from torrent sites too are to be blamed. Had the producers made more money, they would have produced more films & more newbies would have got a break.
When you can’t spare 140 bucks to watch a movie, how can you expect a producer to invest crores on a hero he doesn’t believe in?
Despite several blind items hinting at a star kid suffering from depression, people don’t shy away from referring to him as a flop actor born to a superstar father. Thankfully he takes it sportingly & even makes fun of himself.
Some are even blaming the blind item culture. But doesn’t everyone gossip? While no one wants to know what is happening in a citizen’s private life, everybody is curious to know about a celeb’s private life. They want to know everything – what they wear, what they eat, whom they are dating, whom they are hooking up with, how much they are worth. Actors too are aware that their lives will be open for public scrutiny. They too mail entertainment journos, blogs(including us) PR articles which paint them in a positive light. It is a mutually beneficial relationship. We assure our readers that we will never publish damaging blind items about any celeb if we are unsure of its authenticity.
What Needs To Change
If you are really troubled by Sushant’s death & want to bring in change, here is what you can do
1. Stop watching & supporting award shows. All of them are rigged. All of those awards are given on the basis of star power, box office pull & whether you danced at the event. Some awards shows give an award to every superstar who attends, just to keep them happy. Till the time performers like Nawazuddin Siddique, Rajkummar Rao, Ayushmann Khurana, Radhika Apte, etc are not getting Best Actor trophies our work is not done. Superachievers & senior stars like Shahrukh Khan, Salman Khan, etc should be barred from hosting shows. A junior celeb’s morale gets destroyed when an SRK makes fun of him on at an event that is televised nationally. The blow is a lot softer when a stand up comic cracks those jokes. The stand-up comics will roast all the celebs, including the biggies.
2. Stop leaving negative comments on the social media handles of celebs. They read all those comments. You never know how your comments might impact them.
3. Make it a point to watch the movies of Bollywood outsiders in the theatres, instead of watching it on a streamer. Downloading the movie via torrent sites should be banned.
4. Stop supporting stars with underworld connections.
5. Bollywood celebs on their part should stop being hypocrites. While the MeToo movement in Hollywood was supported by superstar celebs who outed the biggies, it was a huge flop in India as none of the big celebs outed the real culprits. The casting couch is very much alive & kicking in Bollywood. Some Bollywood outsiders who have made it big, are themselves the proponents of the casting couch in Bollywood. A Deepika or Priyanka or Kriti or Ayushmann should have named & shamed the culprits. All of them shy away from naming the people who asked them to compromise.
6. Stop crying nepotism. Till the time the world has parents & children nepotism will exist.
Karan Johar & Aditya Chopra too are part of the system. Nepotism, bullying, celebs with underworld connections, casting couch existed even before they came into the industry. Shekhar Kapur’s tweet is apt in the current scenario & sums up what we have to say on this issue
Naming few people has no value. They themselves are products and victims of a ‘system’ everyone is protesting against.
If you really care, if you’re really angry, then bring down the system. Not the individual. That’s guerilla warfare. Not a spurt of anger. #SushantSinghRajput
— Shekhar Kapur (@shekharkapur) June 16, 2020
Edit 1: Who made Ranbir, Hrithik, Tiger, Varun Dhawan, Salman Khan etc stars by watching their movies again & again? – the audiences did. Why didn’t the audiences watch SSR’s Sonchiriya & make it a hit? Because the audiences did not like it. Why are the audiences obsessing over Taimur Ali Khan & not some citizen’s kid? Why aren’t Nawazuddin Siddiqui grossing 100cr+? Because the audiences are not watching it.
Karan Johar or Aditya Chopra did not like Govinda either. But that did not stop him from being a superstar. It was his unprofessionalism which ended his career. No Karan Johar or Aditya Chopra or anyone can end a talented star’s career. It is the audiences who make or break stars.
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