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Mirroring The Industry: Is social media the reason why Bollywood hasn’t found a SUPERSTAR post Hrithik Roshan?
News Source/Courtesy: www.pinkvilla.com

Why has Bollywood not seen a legit superstar since the debut of Hrithik Roshan in 2000 and what role does social media has to play in this? Pinkvilla Debates.

A lot has changed in Bollywood over the last 20 years, and that can be accredited with the rise of internet, which blurred the national boundaries in terms of global exposure. The pattern of creating content changed in the start of new millennium, colliding with the rise of multiplexes in India. But yet in the midst of all this, the concept of idol worshipping stayed intact. While the era of 90s saw the rise of many superstars, one hasn’t seen any a genuine “superstar” since the acting debut of Hrithik Roshan in 2000.

Till date, he is among the lasts from the Hindi film industry, to command a loyal fan following which extends even in the interiors. The fact that his action films have always opened to “Bumper”, “Record” or “Excellent” response reinstates the fact that despite daggling between the genres at regular interval, the loyal fan following in the heartland of India is intact and waiting for the right genre to celebrate their superstar. When Hrithik made his acting debut in 2000, India was devoid of factors like social media, digital websites, the paparazzi culture and a lot more, which kept him away from overexposure in the media and helped in maintaining the intrigue around the debut.

When Hrithik made his acting debut in 2000, India was devoid of factors like social media, which kept him away from overexposure in the media and helped in maintaining the intrigue around the debut

A decade since then, everything changed. The secrecy and exclusivity in the lives of actors blurred, as social media has made them approachable to every person with an internet connection at a click. While the audience had to wait for months to get a glimpse of their favorite stars back in the past, it’s now all available on an almost day to day basis. The younger lot of actors have the tendency to overexpose themselves through the usage of social media by posting work out, and food videos, constant live chats with fans, and an overdose of pictures.

The audience in today’s time is well aware about an actor much before he/she is gearing up for an acting debut. Particularly for star-kid, in times when the debate of nepotism is an on-going thing, it would be ideal for the star-kid to come and surprise the audience who is not exposed to their talent, rather than putting out the videos much in advance, giving the audience a chance to pass a judgement much before the release of their debut film.

The audience in today’s time is well aware about an actor much before he/she is gearing up for an acting debut.

Among all the gen-next stars, two actors who have managed to keep certain amount of intrigue around their personality are Ranbir Kapoor and Tiger Shroff, and a glance at their filmography with respect to box-office collections will give a clear picture that they have an edge over the rest. Ranveer Singh too is seeing a gradual rise in stardom with every passing film.

However, neither of the top three gen-next stars, have attained the status of superstardom at this point of time. While they have been successful in their own space, the loyalty factor i.e. the ability to take an average cross a certain threshold, remains to be tested, though Tiger Shroff is slowly moving in that space as he has been able to get the masses on board for his action films. He is trying to position himself as the hero of masses, an area which is mastered by Salman Khan over the last 30 years.

Tiger Shroff is trying to position himself as the hero of masses, an area which is mastered by Salman Khan over the last 30 years.

Ranveer Singh too is on the tip of his ice berg, with probably just two three big openers (in a quick span) away from establishing himself as a legit superstar. Ranbir might have reached the pinnacle by now by breaking the glass ceiling set, but the constant delay of some of his ambitious films and long gaps between the releases has kept him back from being crowned the first “legit” superstar post the debut of Hrithik Roshan. Sanju has set the benchmark for him, and probably the follow up to that with two more significant hits, will put him in the ace slot. In a nutshell, every actor from the 90s created an identity that was different from the other – be it Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Aamir Khan, Akshay Kumar or Ajay Devgn. Hrithik Roshan came in 2000s, and created his own distinct space. He brought dance in the forefront, set new standards in terms of body building and didn’t shy away from taking up challenging characters, and set a precedent for an entire generation of actors to follow.

Yes, intrigue around a celeb, always leads to a curiosity, which in turn translates into organic conversations, that builds onto the interest and eventually, the fan following

But well, the next superstar will certainly be the one who creates his own distinct identity in the mind of audience, rather than trying to capitalise on the one already set by the existing big-wigs. Yes, intrigue around a celeb, always leads to a curiosity, which in turn translates into organic conversations, that builds onto the interest and eventually, the fan following. And that can happen only with restrained social media usage.

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