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three methods Bollywood can assist form the way forward for globalization


three methods Bollywood can assist form the way forward for globalization


Like most Indian millennials, movies are an inseparable part of my life. After all, we produce the largest number of films (between 1,500 and 2,000) worldwide every year. The Mumbai-based Hindi film industry, also known as Bollywood, represents the majority of national and international cinema revenue, making it the largest sector in the Indian film industry. Economic liberalization in India, the growing strength of the Indian diaspora and the shift to “glocal” content have been some of the main drivers of Bollywood’s growth in the world market. Our films are increasingly finding global audiences and Bollywood actors are getting bigger and bigger roles in Hollywood.

As an Indian, I am proud of Bollywood’s success around the world, while as a world citizen I am optimistic about its impact on society and culture. In his agenda article Why art has the power to change the world, Crystal Award winner Olafur Eliasson says: “Art doesn’t show people what to do, but preoccupation with a good work of art can affect your senses, your body and Your senses connect your mind. It can make the world tangible. And that felt emotion can inspire thought, engagement, and even action. ”Even scientists believe that by immersing the audience in another person’s perspective, films help create empathy.

Bollywood has created socially progressive content and – through off-screen initiatives – Bollywood artists have focused on key issues, but as a Millennial I believe it can do more to enable sustainable, empathic and inclusive societies. Here are some ways Bollywood can shape the future of globalization by addressing some of the critical issues identified by millennials.

While the film industry is not a major polluter compared to other sectors, its carbon footprint is significant nonetheless. There have been independent efforts in Bollywood to make films about climate change or to produce climate-neutral films, but these developments have not yet been adopted by the top stars and major studios.

This is surprising as Bollywood should be concerned that the climate crisis is threatening its core business: Mumbai will be at great risk from rising sea levels by 2050.

In the West, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) and the Producers Guild of America (PGA) have issued guidelines for film and production companies on how to measure and manage their carbon footprint. Bollywood can orient itself towards this and gradually switch to more sustainable methods of film production. It can also follow ISO 20121 standards in organizing events such as award ceremonies, film screenings, and parties.

Conflict and toxic nationalism

One of the most reassuring results of the 2017 Global Shapers Annual Survey was: “For the vast majority of young people, identity is not about region, geography, religion or ethnicity; they simply see themselves as “human”. Young people feel united simply because they exist together in the same world. Both as individuals and as a collective, they share similar concerns and desires. For them, their race is the human race. “

Image: Global Shaper Annual Survey

In the past, wars and conflicts between India and Pakistan have inspired some of the most successful Bollywood films. In an effort to make India look good, these films chose to dehumanize “the enemy”. However, the surprise hit of Raazi, a 2018 box office hit, shows that modern audiences can appreciate patriotic films that don’t demonize the other country.

At a time of increasing political polarization, art can either be a healing force or it can be manipulated to deepen fault lines. I admit that Bollywood cannot improve relations between countries and communities on its own, but it can choose not to instigate hate politics.

Gender inequality and discrimination

2018 saw the box office hit of Bollywood films on a budget and the rise of male actors who fail to conform to traditional hyper masculine behavior. Professor Gopalan Mullik, lecturer in film studies at St. Xavier’s College in Calcutta, put it this way: “Look at the young heroes who are emerging now – Ayushmann Khurrana, Vicky Kaushal, Rajkummar Rao – they are far removed from the male machismo images the previous generation of Bollywood heroes. My reading is that this new generation of heroes is much closer to the sexual closeness of man and woman in the Indian ethos. In other words, they have a lot of femininity in them, which is the hallmark of traditional Indian thinking about the masculine and the feminine. “

Unfortunately, Bollywood films are often accused of upholding the culture of rape by objectifying women, a fact filmmaker Karan Johar admitted in a 2017 session in Davos It shows that there is a growing consensus that gender discrimination must end. Young people around the world are taking steps to raise gender awareness and stimulate conversations that challenge the status quo. Bollywood has to respond with its content to this evolving audience while taking concrete steps to make the industry a safe place for all genders.

As Bollywood’s largest market is getting younger, responding to these problems identified by Millennials also means better business acumen. Bollywood needs to partner with millennials if it is to be a transformative agent of change. Now is the time to shape the future of globalization on our terms.


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