Writer-editor Apurva Asrani has written a scathing note on the ongoing discussion around nepotism in Bollywood, triggered by the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput. Apurva has said that it is not just Bollywood “insiders” that play power politics with talented people but even “outsiders” do the same, adding that he suffered at the hands of the outsiders.
Apurva wrote in a long and elaborate post, “Many have woken up to feel bad for #SushantSingh after he took his life, but very few spoke for him during his struggle. And the more successful he got, the more he was boycotted, maligned. Thankgod for gracious men like Manoj Bajpayee who spoke for him when it mattered. This is the same Manoj Bajpayee who stood by me in 2017, when I was discredited from my work, slandered in the press & suffered a complete breakdown. I have no ill will today, but I must point out that I suffered at the hands of ‘outsiders’, not nepotism. This system is messed up. There are many talented filmmakers & actors who are not getting their due, because a nexus between the powerful & the press exists. If you are someone who dares to be outspoken, if you don’t suck up, then your achievements will be ignored; in film reviews, at award ceremonies..”
He said many talented people give up the struggle, which is why mediocrity prevails. “The ones that feel too much, & this should be an asset in the arts, either become sick or take their own lives. Others, like me, move away. Some continue to do selective work, others start farms/hotels. This is a system that becomes vindictive if you call a spade a spade. If you didn’t like one of their films, they wont work with you again. If you reject a script written by a film critic, they can go from loving your work, to hating it overnight. I once rejected the romantic overtures of a journalist & he has pulled all stops to bring me down since. The environment is toxic. The powerful feed on the passionate, the mediocre destroy the brilliant. By calling this nepotism, you are ignoring the elephant in the room.”
Many have woken up to feel bad for #SushantSingh after he took his life, but very few spoke for him during his struggle….
Posted by Apurva Menka Asrani on Tuesday, June 16, 2020
Sushant was found dead in his Mumbai residence on Sunday, leaving thousands of fans and friends grieving over the early demise of the talented artist.
Also read: Ram Gopal Varma calls Karan Johar ‘a bigger victim’, says ‘without nepotism society will collapse’
Apurva and Manoj have worked together in films such as Satya and Aligarh while Manoj worked with Sushant in the dacoit film, Sonchiriya. Speaking about Sushant, Manoj recently said, “My mind is not leaving the image of him (Sushant) on the first day (of Sonchiriya shoot), coming to me and suddenly touching my feet. All the perceptions that people were floating about him, that one gesture of his just questioned everything. Not that he touched my feet…it just says so many things about his background, where he came from.”
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