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Has It Turn into Even Extra Tough for Outsiders to Break Into Bollywood Now?

Sayani Gupta and Avinash Tiwary, who have made a name for themselves in the film industry without a godfather, believe that the relentless attacks on the reputation of Bollywood in the last few months have made it even more difficult for aspiring artistes having no film background or connections, to convince their families to let them pursue a career in showbiz.

With scathing accusations about nepotism and favouritism to ill-treatment of outsiders and the drug nexus, Bollywood has been under intense scrutiny since actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s alleged death by suicide in June.

At a panel discussion at the India Film Project, Sayani and Avinash spoke at length about how they have been processing everything and why they feel that this would only reinforce the stereotypical image of the film industry.

“I come from Bihar, from a conventional family. Even now, the perception of the Hindi film industry isn’t great. It was not that people didn’t know that these things happen, everyone thought this is what Bollywood is. I wouldn’t deny that somewhere I also was aware of the fact that it’s probably not the ideal space for someone who comes from Bihar, whose parents want to see him as an IAS officer,” said Avinash, who made an incredible acting debut with Laila Majnu in 2018.

“It’s hurtful, you start taking it personally because you know it has got nothing to do with any of this. It’s like, even after all these years you only get to hear this place isn’t right, isn’t good while you are living your life, doing what you can, creating your own space, big, small or limited,” added Avinash.

Sayani, whose show Four More Shots Please has been nominated at the International Emmy Awards 2020 in Best Comedy Series category, said what has happened in the last few months is “unfortunate”.

“The last few months have made it even more difficult for kids to come from a middle-class background, work in Mumbai and have a respectable space for themselves,” the actress said, before adding that the young talents will have to fight back and work even harder to make their parents believe that one can have a dignified life even as an artiste.