To be a SRK fan is to be mocked by cynics, by new age film lovers, by psuedo intellectuals .. etc etc etc … Its always been like that.
Rediff poll voted him the worst actor of 2001 (the year of Devdas), the most hated actor of 2006. It used to be absolutely normal to see seething sadistic comments on every rediff page. Forget the trolls, my friends from the IT crowd, too influenced by Hollywood- impassive but brilliant way of story telling, they will look at you as ‘what is wrong with you?’ the minute you confess being an SRK fan.
To be Shahrukh fan is to pretend not to care, when someone calls an intense performance of his an act of superlative hamming and yet continue being a fan… Some people stop doing it. They grow up and move to someone who doesn’t do a cringeworthy OTT scene — Some people are too enamoured by his charm — off screen and on screen… But then they too will admit of him being arrogant…It has always been like this.
What is happening right now is that, the media has picked up the already existing anti-SRKism … The people who see beyond the obvious charm and goodness because they are too skeptical, impassive and judgmental to believe it. They discover some manipulative, egoistic, attention seeking, frustrated and angry SRK… they seem to think that is the real deal… You only see what you want to see. The Kunder fight, affair stories, IPL fight it all fits in and every other thing SRK does that can fits their judgement… Its no different from the rhetoric of rajen, satyam and danish … It has always been like this.
The typical SRK fan you find in twitter etc are perhaps silly romantics loving Gazebo scene of KKHH… One thing is they have a heart, they feel more than they analyze, its a sheer joy of watching world through the pink tinted glass via SRK films… (Cheesy says the cynical part of me)… These people too see the off-screen SRK through the positive media narrative that hails him a success story post DDLJ…. Of course its PR stuff. The thing is, it is not entirely wrong nor is it entirely right…
Very few media narratives do justice who SRK really is. One of it is Sanjay Jha’s
“SRK is not a disruptive character; something tells me he hates negativity. That’s why Khan has dominated a hugely cocooned, incestuous industry and created his own kingdom of dreams. Whatever the personal predilections of others, Khan has not allowed cynicism to overtake his sensibilities. “
I thin SRKs hidden biggest strength comes from his own internal pain. The fact that his parents died when he was still young. That his mind-numbing success will be forever elusive to them. I think only those who have no parents will understand his emotional-mental construct.. I think he lets his passions overflow , his energies double-up, his character assume new dimensions whenever he gets in front of those whirring cameras. It’s a cathartic moment. He lets it go.
So Rahul becomes the new name of new born children in India. SRK may pretend otherwise, but Bollywood is not his real home. It will never be. It is only his corporate office, where he has a job to do. A scene to act. A product to endorse. And a hit to deliver. .
But his biggest family is now widespread across the desert plains of Rajasthan, his home-town of Delhi, the congested by-lanes of Pune, the maddening multitude of Kolkota, the fan clubs in Jhumritalaiya, and the innumerable unknown cities, towns and villages that make India. And the world.
Vir Sanghvi’s write up used to be the best write up on SRK for a while… It presents Srk will all his inherent flaws…
“There’s a Clever Shahrukh somewhere in there; the fellow who knows how the game is played and will play it better than anybody else. There’s also, I think, A Genuinely Nice Shahrukh, the man who will promote his friends, will go out of his way to help strangers, and will give lakhs and lakhs to charity, only on the condition that it is never publicised. There’s a Financially Savvy Shahrukh, who will make crores doing endorsements, live shows and even dancing at weddings, knowing that he now has the freedom to turn down any film role that doesn’t excite him on the grounds that he could make the same amount of money (or more) from a single ad.
And then, of course, hidden deep within all the other Shahrukhs, is the guy he never really lets you see. The Vulnerable Shahrukh. Or, the Essentially Insecure Shahrukh. The boy who lost his parents before he made it in the movies, who has used Gauri, Juhi Chawla, Farah, Karan, Aditya, Aziz Mirza and a few others to create an alternative family environment where he is loved and secure. Who is so terrified by failure that his solution has been to act as though the possibility does not exist; to convince himself that he’s the best at anything he wants to do and that there will never ever be bad days in his life.
You glimpse this Shahrukh, every now and then, when he talks. But he’s just a flash in the crowd. Just one more Shahrukh hidden deep within the cluster of other Shahrukhs.”
His analysis of SRK post the supposed meltdown …
So, I’m glad that Shah Rukh has decided to be his own man. If he is angry, he shows it. If he is upset, he talks about it. And if he’s insulted, he lashes out. He has always been honest in his interviews but all of us who heard him at the HT Summit were struck by his candour. As he said, “I decided on the plane to Delhi that I am not going to continue being diplomatic.”
I much prefer him this way. He seems real and genuine. He is no longer a prisoner of our expectations or of the image cultivated over the decades. This is the real Shah Rukh: flesh, blood, anger, humour, and as always, that engaging intelligence.”
And I believe he is right. SRK had stopped pretending …. Though 2012 may seem a horrible year for SRK and his fans, its also the year he opened up… The Yale Speech, The superb interview in THINKFEST 2012, That post IPL win interview with the media (the Good sweet, bad sweet one)…
As the world changes this interpretation is rendered more and more through various media. I become a cad. A philanderer. A womanizer. An abusive drunk. A callous arrogant star who flouts rules and smokes indiscriminately in public. An anti-national enemy-supporting upstart who ought to be taught a lesson, and so on. Or a perfect family man. An astute businessman. A doting father. Sex on toast. Or even just a guy who smells beautiful.
None of this has to do with who I really am. Yet it becomes the way I’m perceived by many. Here is where my public journey deviates from my personal experience and sometimes pushes me into a more isolated space than I wish to be in. Detached or attached the one thing I cannot avoid is what my persona is interpreted as, seen from the outside. As honest and similar as I believe my public and personal appearances and beliefs are, I do get overtaken by what people want to perceive of me because of being completely objectified over the last 20 years.
Its all right there infront of you. For people who want to see it… they will see it. Like Micheal Jackson’s voice still stinging our souls to heal the world, while his whacko face with that decaying nose are long gone.
SRK had opened up like never before. He expressed deep thoughts in the form of write ups, in response to unprecedented clinical analysis of his behavior, post mortem psych analysis by self acclaimed shrinks minus empathy it takes to be one. Most are at loggerheads which each other. Just like when SRK in an super exuberant mood did spontaneous cartwheels for the public … only to make it to headlines media reports that said .. “SRK has lost it totally” …
The oxymoron like difference from SRK and his haters can be best described as below …
“So I am a Khan, but no stereotyped image is factored into my idea of who I am. Instead, the living of my life has enabled me to be deeply touched by the love of millions of Indians. I have felt this love for the last 20 years regardless of the fact that my community is a minority within the population of India”
And the core message of it…
“It doesn’t take a superstar to be able to give love, it just takes a heart and as far as I know, there isn’t a force on this earth that can deprive anyone of theirs.”
It was countered by a nasty piece …
Much the same can be said of actor Shah Rukh Khan. A man of at best middling histrionic capabilities, he has fashioned a far more phenomenally successful career on the strength of far less discernible talent. More importantly, he was embraced by a generation of Indians who were evidently so swayed by his looks (or whatever else they saw in him) that they readily overlooked his vacuous performances, blessed him with fame and fortune – and even went on to crown him ‘King Khan’.
At the peak of his career, Shah Rukh was spoken of in the same breath as the Shahenshah of Bollywood, Amitabh Bachchan. That comparison may have been valid in terms of the box-office appeal that both held, but a certain indefinable element of classy refinement that Bachchan exuded even when the cameras were not whirring remained forever out of reach of SRK.
In his eternal quest to be the ageless Peter Pan of Bollywood, Shah Rukh appears not to have come to terms with the fact that while once he may have commanded a forgiving fan following, he is well past his prime. Like the Norma Desmond character that Gloria Swanson essayed in Billy Wilder’s Sunset Boulevard, he is only clinging on to the memories of a happier day when the arclights were turned on him and the adulation of fans enveloped him in a warm, glowing embrace.
Grow up, Shah Rukh Khan! Reuters
So, by every verifiable metric, it’s fair to say that Shah Rukh Khan has enjoyed more success – and earned more fame and fortune and fan-love – than he arguably deserves.
The writeup takes extra glee shredding 20 years of a self made mans career to pieces… Only a sheer sadist, will like it… It contradicts the core message of SRK’s article. It denies the heart it takes to love. SRK is wrong when he said it there is no force that denies what it takes to love … There is a dark force. Its SRK who needs to grow up. His positivity needs to disillusioned, he needs to be taught a leasson.. as per Venky Vembu.
The author admits of not having read the entire Outlook article while writing the scathy piece … Perhaps its a wake up call for people who judge him without taking a moment to see it from his perspective.
May be, the future has a lot more embarrassments to deliver to… Rumours of second marriage are already spreading. I am convinced that SRK no longer cares … but unfortunately he has decided to shut up… not release his biography fearing people who misconstruct … thereby giving the other narrative gain more importance. I guess its an attempt towards self preservation.
May be, his movies will start flopping left, right and center… Critics may continue to dissect his guts, May be will be a lonely Rajesh Khanna or a never giving up Dev Anand … Or perhaps he will be vindicated ala Sridevi . Sridevi was booed out too… with unfair comparisons to Madhuri and scathy articles about insecurity, heavy drinking, random affair with a very young Salman Khan, a car driver, a married man… and getting pregnant before marriage kind of scandals …
It remains to be seen… for, me the only regret is… not having seen SRK in an intense realistic role which uses all of his cathartic onscreen presence in the positive way … Its possible. SRK is capable of it. Wish he works with the correct script that does justice both his talent and screen presence. One performance to shut up the cynics – The Venky Vembu’s and Shobha De’s of the world….Tags: Shah Rukh Khan