FILM AND TV STUDIES WORK PROGRAMME
1. Analyse the star persona of any actor of your choosing. What traits connotations and values does that star persona embody and to what extent does he or she bring the same traits, connotations and values to each role? You should answer with close reference to at least THREE films.
In this essay I am going to analyse the star persona of one of Bollywood most successful actor, Shahrukh Khan, also known as SRK. Shahrukh Khan has made over fifty movies over the years; starting from 1992 he made his debut film Deewana (1992) which gave him box office hit. This gave him the most successful launch of his career in the Bollywood film industry. His role in the film gave achieved him Filmfare for the best Debut Award.
There are three films of Shahrukh Khan that I am going to use close reference to, they are, KKHH (Kuch Kuch Hota Hai Something Happens 1998), K3G (Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham Sometimes Happiness, Sometimes Sadness 2001) and (Chak De! India Come On India 2007).
The reason I chose these movies as these movies are very well known for big the success of his acting part in these movies.
KKHH is a story of a simple stylish, sensuous and ambrosial love triangle story. Rahul (Shahrukh Khan) the tomboy Anjali (Kajol). They are both students at St Xavier’s College. They are the best of friends. One day Tina, (Rani Mukerji), the principals daughter enrols the college. She is from London and is very beautiful, feminine and sophisticated and the opposite of Anjali. Rahul falls for her as they meet for the first time. Anjali then realises that she has feeling for Rahul and did not realise the careless comment on his part that she had heard, which equated love with friendship. This causes the love triangle to unfold. When one day Rahul confesses his love for Tina to Anjali, Anjali leaves the college, to forge the heartbreak that has caused her.
Tina and Rahul marry and have a daughter whom they name Anjali. Tina dies after childbirth but has written a series of eight letters. On Anjali birthday she asks about where her name has come from. Rahul daughter Anjali believes that the older Anjali can make her father happy again and decided to help him reclaim his lost love.
Rahul then meets Anjali again at a camp where Rahul daughter has enrolled, where her namesake is the counsellor. The namesake discoverers without the knowledge of the girl, the truth of her new charges of parentage. Rahul finds the old feelings reviving. But Anjali has bowed to her family’s wishes and is engaged to another man. Complications ensue, but all ends well as Anjali fiancé steps aside to let the fated couple marry at last.
Richard Dyer in his book says “A star image is made out of media texts that can be grouped together as promotion, publicity, films and commentaries/criticism”.
SRK falls directed into all these mentioned. Promotion is one big main thing is what makes SRK. Although he is worldwide famous primarily to the South Asian ethnicity around the world, most of the promotion is spread over India itself.
SRK is one of the famous Bollywood star pin ups in India. He also has fan clubs publications (which is largely controlled by the studios), fashion pictures, ads where he endorses a merchandise like affordable cars, Pepsi and soap where it is usually shown in India and other neighbouring countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh. SRK works well in this advertisement as people in India love him. He is a person who came from a middle class working background to a top successful actor. He is also the very few actors who made it in Bollywood as this industry is very hard to enter if either you have close family in the industry, like father, grandfather, brother or sister. He has had no-one like this, and he made it to the top.
He makes public appearances and also cameos in supporting his other actors in the Bollywood song videos scenes such as I See You 2006, Saatiya 2002, Heyy Baby 2007 and Luck By Chance 2008.
Promotion is probably the most straightforward of all the text which constructs a stars image, in that it is the most deliberate, direct, intentioned and self-conscious.
Publicity is theoretically different from promotion in that it is not, or does not appear to be “deliberated” image-making. It is “what the press finds out”, “what the star lets slip in an interview” and is found in the newspapers and magazines. In content, this is much controlled by SRK agents and studios.
A one important is the notion of the vehicle. The films he does have a distinct and privilege place in the stars image. It is after all films stars that are to be considered their celebrity is defined by the face of their appearing in films. However SRK is a phenomenon of cinema and of a general social meanings and there are instances of stars whose films may actually be less important than other aspects of their career.
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Mostly important is the nation of the vehicle. Films were often built around the star image. Stories might be written expressly to feature a given star, or books might be bought for production with a star in mind. The film K3G 2001 was one of the highest grossing Indian films overseas until 2006. This film is a family movie and the cast are all top Bollywood actors, such as Amitabh Bachan, Jaya Bachan, Sharukh Khan, Kajol, Hritik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor. The plot of the movie is about Rahul (SRK), who is the adopted by Yash (Amitab) and wife Nandini (Jaya) who was able to give birth to son Rohan (Hritikh). The father is the richest famous businessman in India. He believes in keeping tradition and is against love marriages. When Rohan comes back to India after overseas studying for few years, he falls in love with Anjali (Kajol).
Yash decides to arrange marriage for son Rahul, but Rahul tells his father that he wants to marry Anjali. His father is angered by this, as he is not opting for his choice of high class society girl unlike Anjali who is middle class girl. Rahul apologises to his father Yash and promises to do whatever he asked for, and as he goes to tell Anjali that he is going to be married, he sees that Anjali father has passed away suddenly. After seeing that Anjali and her sister has no family and no one to live with, he marries Anjali on the spot. When he brings her home his father is more angered and disowns him and says that because you were adopted and not the blood of mine, you acted like this.
Rahul is upset and hurt hard, shares emotional goodbye.
The story goes on to the younger brother Rohan who goes on a mission to get his brother back close to the family. This film shows love, drama, family tradition ECT.
This story was written and directed by Karen Johor. SRK was picked for the role of Rahul as he is well suited for this character. Karen Johor has worked with both actors SRK and Kajol in his past movie KKHH which was a success and he even used Kajol in this movie to play Anjali, as they had chemistry in KKHH being a love couple. SRK can bring tears to an audience, with his acting skills in all his movies. SRK made this movie what it is, as he brought his own personal feelings into it. Losing a father was one scene in the movie which he can relate to, as his father passed away in 1981 before he became successful. So this shows that he was chosen for that movie as he suited the role.
We may know the first of all points at which star is effective in the construction of character. These can be considered from two points of view: the fact of a star being in the film, and their performance in it. As regards the fact that a given star in the film, audience, foreknowledge, the stars name and his appearance already signify that condensation of attitudes and values which is the stars image. Having SRK made K3G successful but also with the help with other fellow top cast members.
In the film Chak De! India SRK plays the role of the coach for the Indian women hockey team. He used to be the star player of the Indian men’s cricket team but as he lost one match to Pakistan, India people felt he let Pakistan win as him being Muslim. Indian cricket team asked him to be the role of the Coach which no man would like to participate in India. The film goes on, from him having the typical slow team with no team game. He guides them to play well and win the championship.
This film role suited SRK to play this part. He is the heart of India for past fifteen years and everyone in India looks up to. His role in this made this movie the top gross movie of 2007 and was declared a “Blockbuster” in U.S. Of all of SRK films that make him successful his star’s image fit with all the traits of the character. For example in all three movies talked about in this essay, the role SRK usually plays is the man who gets the girl of his dream. He is also shown as the popular man, mature, and also family man. He can play these roles well in all his movies that he has done.
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