Bachao! How to save Bollywood award shows!

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Note from Editors: This article was published over a year ago, but we are re-publishing it as it seems extremely relevant at the moment, with IIFA having just concluded! Some of the article has been updated.

Bollywood has it all these days – glamour, talent and fantastic movies. I’m sad to say that our award shows should not even qualify as entertainment as they are pathetic, boring and blah. I honestly believe that our industry deserves more! We’re always harping on about how Bollywood should get more recognition internationally, but we should at least recognize our extraordinary feats properly at home first! In this article, BollySpice presents ways to save our award shows.

1. Stop the advertising!
I know that the money to fund these award shows has to come from somewhere but that doesn’t mean it has to be recited every ten minutes. Often times when you are watching an award show and there is a big award to be presented, you expect someone of at least some stature to come and present the award. But, what do you get? Some random person, you have never heard of, from a company that has funded the show. How boring. Rather, they should advertise through the commercials when the program is telecast or at one segment at the awards only. We want to see our industry, not politicians and other rich people!

2. Quality not quantity
Why do we have so many award shows? GIFA, Star Screen, IIFA, Filmfare, Stardust, Bollywood, Zee, Apsara – that’s way too many. It would be better if there was one or two or even three, but they were all really good. Most stars don’t even attend in half of those shows and they are just a waste of time and money, or a poor excuse for advertising. I still don’t understand why there are GIFA awards, and that too, for only half the year. If there were a few great award shows where everyone attends, the wait would be worth it!

3. Get rid of C-grade hosts
To keep people engaged, you need a host who is charismatic, lively and hilarious. Most of the time at least, the hosts we are forced to listen to, are not even close. They could even try some interesting combos like Preity-Saif/Abhi, Kajol-SRK or Rani-Abhi. Even Mallika Sherawat would be entertaining! They could try one of our comedians like Boman Irani or Rajpal Yadav. But please, get rid of these inconsequential and irritating hosts!

4. Performances that we want to see
I’m sure we’d all agree that performances are what make a Bollywood awards show distinct. Imagine how great it would be if the performances are all people we want to see! Salman Khan is a great performer, but after you see him at almost every single awards show, it just gets boring (last year). This year, it was Kareena who performed at each and every award show. Organizers need to find a perfect balance between variety and star power. It gets irritating when we’re forced to sit through performances from actors that hardly have songs to perform or actors that haven’t done a good film in years.

5. Lose the jeans!
Our films are abundant in grandeur, so our award shows should be too. A lot of our stars and attendees just decide to drop in with jeans and a T-shirt, or something terribly informal, as if the event means nothing to them. I applaud Filmfare for finally initiating a black-tie awards show! I hope all the others take cue and do the same. I mean, how exciting does it make audiences feel when we see people strolling into the show with ratty clothes? It doesn’t look too good on the industry or on the awards show either. You’re all loaded – so at least wear something appropriate!

6. Tacky sets
Apparently blotches of colour and garish lights are pretty these days – at least according to the people who design the stage. I’m sorry to let them know, but really – that’s just ugly! They should go for something simple and elegant which can work wonders.

7. Justice where it’s due
I wish our award shows would stop giving awards according to box office and star quality and focus more on talent. I know Hrithik was great in Krrish but I really don’t think it was “Best Actor” quality. While average movies like Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, Don and Krrish got nominations from left, right and centre, other powerful movies of 2006 like Corporate, Pyaar Ke Side Effects and Khosla Ka Ghosla were neglected at award shows. Similarly, why was Aishwarya getting nominations for Dhoom 2 when clearly the nomination she should have got was for Umrao Jaan? This year, great films like Dharm and outstanding performances in Eklavya were neglected. Why? All I’m saying is give justice to who deserves it!

8. Stop sucking up!
This one goes slightly hand in hand with number seven, but I really think we have got to stop sucking up to the big stars. For example, at last year’s GIFA awards there was an award for “Most Searched Star” which went to Shahrukh Khan and Priyanka Chopra. Not only is that false, but what was the need for that award? SRK doesn’t have to get an award all the time – he’s a big boy and I’m sure he can handle it! But it’s not just for him–random awards are always being created for the big-wig’s of the industry as if they MUST go home with a trophy each and every time. Bottom line: stop sucking up for no reason at all.

There you have it – an eight-step plan to improve the quality of our award shows. No, they’re not horrible but they could be better and Bollywood deserves better! One aspect that I hope Bollywood award shows never lose is the performances because they are undoubtedly the part most people look forward to! Well, I must say, the shows are definitely improving and we can only hope for bigger and better in the years to come!

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