In this essay I am going to analyse the star persona of one of Bollywood most successful actor, Shahrukh Khan. 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 launce of his career in the Bollywood film industry. His role in the film gave achieved him Filmfare for the best Debut Award.
The Bollywood Industry today is the largest film industry in the world. In the UK during June 2007 Yorkshire hosted the IFA Awards, (International Film Academy Awards) very similar as the Bollywood version of the Oscars. This was an event that was watched by over 500 million people, in 100 countries around the world.
The Bollywood film industry produces over seventy top films per year. Stars like Shahrukh Khan and other top Bollywood stars such as Karenna Kapoor, Akshay Kumar would act in three to four movies per year, comparing to Hollywood actors such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and Will smith who would do one movie per year and take their time producing it.
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), KK3G (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.
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Tina and Rahul marry and have a daughter whom they name Anjali. Tina dies after childbirth but has written a series of eight letters. Every year, on Anjali birthday she is given a letter and hears her mother loves wishes for her. In the eighth and last letter, the little asks about where her name has come from. Where Rahul had been blind, Tina had noticed the older Anjali emotions and pitted her deeply. Because Rahul hasn’t remarried, perhaps his first love could be the mother that the young Anjali needs and wants.
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.
In this role SRK plays two types of character. One when he is in college, as the young hip guy on campus. The second part he is played as a widowed father figure not re-married but getting on with life.
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 cars, Pepsi and soap where it is usually shown in India and other neighbouring countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh. 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 the star 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. Sometimes alteration to the story might be affected in order to preserve the stars image. Sometimes alterations to the story might be effected in order to preserve the stars image. This is what is implied by the term star, “Vehicle” (Term used by Hollywood itself).
The vehicle might provide a) a character of the type associated with the star (e.g Monroes “dumb blonde” roles, Garbos melancholic romantic roles), b) a situation, setting or generic context assoiciated with the star ( e.g Garbo in relationships with married men, Wayne in Westerns; as Colin McArther has noted of stars of gangster films, they ” seem to gather within themselves the qualities of the genre…so that the violence, suffering and Angst of the films is restated in their faces, physical, presence, movement and speech.”
Vechincle are important as much for what conventions they set up as for how they develop them, for their ingrediencts as for the realisiation. In certain respects, a set of star vehicle is rather like a film genre such as Western, vehicles continuitiesa of iconography (e.g how they are dressed, made-up and visual style (e.g how they are lit, photographed, placed within the frame) and structure (e.g their role in the films made by a star are vehicles, but looking at their films in terms of vechile draws attention to those films that do not “fit”, that constitute inflections, exceptions to, subversions of the vehcle pattern and the star image.
Criticism and commentaries
This refers to what was said or written about the stars terms of appreciation or interpretation by critics and writiers. It includes contemparoty and supsequant writings (including obituaries and other materials written after a stars death or retire-ment), and is found in film reviews, books on films and indeed in almost any king of writing dealing, fictitiously or otherwise, with the contemproy scene.
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 in the film, audience, foreknowledge, the stars name and his appearance already signify that condensation of attitudes and values which is the stars image.
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 SRK romantic man, funny and popular man is shown in all three movies listen. Usually this is shown in most film he does. He always plays the successful man, the hero and the womaniser.
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