From Katrina shaking her belly to a film with 22 kisses, Bollywood has rediscovered sex! Ritu V Singh reports
Even those who have not seen Sudhir Mishra's Yeh Saali Zindagi
are aware that it has 22 kisses. Contrary to its title, the Censor
Board believed that Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji was for adults only. Konkona
Sen Sharma-starrer Mirch was touted as India's first erotic film. Love, Sex Aur Dhokha
thrived on its bold theme, suggestive dialogues and titillating scenes.
If Shah Rukh Khan
and sex sold earlier, the latter seems to have won the round for now!
Bollywood filmmakers take on bold themes and use abusive language
liberally in a bid to depict 'reality' . In a competitive industry where
numerous films release every week, item numbers and double-meaning
dialogues perhaps help a film attain its USP.
Komal Nahata says, "Sex scenes and item numbers draw the audience's
attention . In the case of Yeh Saali Zindagi, the screenplay is complex
and the audience didn't understand the film. However, they laughed at
all the abuses. Obviously, this makes a film more saleable."
Sanjeev K Bijli of PVR explains, "I don't think today's youngsters would
prefer watching a kissing scene shadowed by a bunch of flowers. A good
item number, certain dialogues or scenes that grab eyeballs work in
favour of a film. You can build your promotional campaign around it.
Munni badnaam hui did wonders for Dabangg. Though Tees Maar Khan bombed
at the box-office , Sheila ki jawaani was a hit."
No prizes for guessing that actors don't mind raising their hemlines or getting cozy onscreen. After Malaika Arora Khan and Katrina Kaif
, now it's Deepika Padukone's Dum Maro Dum that people are looking forward to for titillation.
Actor Emraan Hashmi, better known as the serial kisser of Bollywood,
will be seen next in Murder 2, which revolves around the dark world of
prostitutes, cross-dressers and pimps. A lot of steamy action is
guaranteed. Emraan reveals, "The movie has sensuality, but also a strong
story to back it up." Jacqueline Fernandez
who plays a pin-up girl in the same film, said in an interview, "I have
no issues in shedding clothes, if the role demands. Why am I an actor
if I can't give my best to a role?"
Actor Arunoday Singh is
suddenly all over the place thanks to the success of Yeh Saali Zindagi.
He even invited trouble after he kissed a girl at a promotional event.
When asked how important it was to abuse and kiss his heroine in the
film, Arunoday said, "It's a big part of the character I play. My female
fan following has increased. In Hollywood
it doesn't matter how many times an actor has kissed onscreen. Why have
different standards for Bollywood ? And, if it helps my film sell
better , why would I have a problem?"
Filmmakers claim their
films are getting bolder as a reflection of society. They want their
films to be more real. In Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji, Shruti Hasaan boldly
confesses watching po*n films. Shazahn Padamsee, who plays Ajay Devgn's
subordinate at work in the same film, asks him when he lost his
Director Madhur Bhandarkar explains, "Shazahn's
character is that of any teenager who's cool with issues like virginity
and sex. Take a look at how youngsters talk and behave on reality shows.
Why does the Censor Board have different norms for reality shows and
films? My film would have done better business if it was given a U/A
certificate . These days, we have a smart multiplex audience that wants
to see a movie they can identify with."
Director Sudhir Mishra
was miffed with the Censor Board when he was asked to drop the word
'saali' from the title, as he thinks it doesn't really count as an
Censor Board member Nandini Sardesai explains,
"Attitudes have changed. As a lecturer, I've witnessed youngsters who
are open about their relationships. In films, it may go a little
overboard, just to add drama. Otherwise , sex is not something alien to
them. If the theme of the film is bold, we allow the film without cuts,
but with an 'A' certificate."
Films are no longer made for a
common audience. Bijli says, "Not all films are targeted at families. In
fact, in many families, kids and parents go separately for the same
film. Even the censors are becoming liberal. These films are made on a
small budget and are targeted to a certain section. No One Killed
Jessica was made on a budget of Rs 11-12 crore, Love, Sex Aur Dhokha had
a budget of only Rs 2 crore."
Rachika Shrivastava, a
19-year-old college student says, "I can't go for just any movie with my
family. I generally read the reviews or ask my friends if it's meant
for family viewing. My family is not conservative, but we still changed
the channel when Veena and Asmit made out on Bigg Boss. My mother
laughed at the title Kaminey, but I couldn't tell her that I saw a film
titled Love, Sex Aur Dhokha."
Sometime ago, Salman Khan
confessed he can't kiss on screen as he wouldn't be able to face his
father later. Not too many current actors or filmmakers would agree with
As long as sex sells, there will be takers!