This is a suuuuuuuuper fast news report, because I am still on vacation and I want to spend time with my sister, not blog. But I also feel it’s not fair to all of you, who read me so faithfully, not to provide content! And anyway, there were a couple of interesting stories today.
Salman Builds Theaters
This is the really interesting one! Salman is opening a movie theater on the outskirts of Bombay, Salman Talkies. It will be super cheap and offer tax free tickets (I assume because the money is going to Being Human). He says this will be just the first of many theaters he plans to open, all with cheap tickets, all in low income areas.
Really interest leap forward in how the stars control the industry, the first fully vertically integrated star, production to distribution (he is distributing Race 3) all the way to exhibition. Ajay is trying something similar, he just mentioned his plan to buy up theaters, but he hasn’t done the distribution step. SRK has distribution and production now, but not exhibition.
And also an interesting acknowledgement that the audience is dying and drifting away primarily because of high ticket prices, and it is in the interests of the movie stars, and the country in general, to stop the drift.
Priyanka Drops SRK Hints, Part 10 Million
This story and the next are all just clickbait fake stories. But I repeat them because I find them fascinating examples of how Indian film is a continuing saga. In her seminal article on Nargis, Rosie Thomas talked about Indian/Hindi film celebrity culture as the same as a long running soap opera. Those who follow the stories are not looking for a simple conclusion, they are looking for an open ended never ending decades spanning epic.
So, now Priyanka is “dating” Nick Jonas. And immediately the Indian press circles back to the PC-SRK rumors. Because it will always be the defining part of the backstory for the Priyanka “character” in the soap opera that is the Hindi film gossip press. A close friend of the actress says to Bollywoodhungama:
Priyanka is a very friendly girl, and I’d even go as far as to say there’s a mutual attraction, though I doubt it is anything more than a warm friendship. We all know the love of Priyanka’s life is in Mumbai. She keeps throwing these red herrings about global attractions when her heart is clearly in Mumbai
Now, either this “close friend” is someone on Priyanka’s PR team, or it is a real friend, or it is a completely fictional person that BH made up. But what this means is that someone somewhere is aware that the people who read BH want this story to continue, they don’t want a tidy resolution of “And now PC is in love with Nick Jonas and moved on”. An open ending is much more satisfying, lets us keep speculating forever and ever and ever.
(Forever and ever and ever and ever. Until they are both dead and beyond, this story will NEVER DIE. Because the public doesn’t really want it to)
Ranbir and Salman Feud
Same thing as above! Now “someone” is telling BH that Salman requested none of his promotional events for Race 3 will overlap with Ranbir’s for Sanju. Which seems silly, but the fact is there are only a handful of locations in Bombay equipped to handle things like press conferences and music releases and TV appearances and so on, so the odds of bumping into each other are fairly high.
It’s been almost 10 years since (supposedly) Ranbir stole Katrina away from Salman. And another 4 since Ranbir (supposedly) dumped Kat. But the public loves the story of their long running animosity, that Salman hasn’t forgiven Ranbir for the initial slight and/or for treating Kat so shabbily in the end. And so it is brought up again, in order to promote both their films by getting us talking about them. Just like PC’s love affair with SRK magically reappears when she is trying to restart her Bombay career as her American TV show ends.
It’s a never ending cycle. The public wants these stories because we like the idea of an ever continuing ever available for discussion story. And the Stars feed into it because they know they can bring it up for infinity any time they need to promote a film. And the media goes along because they know we will click on them.
(Never ever ever end. Also, does anyone remember besides me that Salman helped launch Ranbir?)
And now here I am repeating the cycle. Oh well, I’m on vacation, I needed something that would get you all talking while I wasn’t around.