Friday, August 17, 2007

Stardust Memories

When I was a kid growing up in India, I spent a lot of time in trains going back and forth from Vadodara to Mumbai and Nargol. And after all the comic books were done with all I had to fall back on was Mum's copy of Stardust. So over the years I developed a fascination for the Bollywood film industry and became intimately familiar with lurid stardusted gossip. I even remember the magazine's nicknames for the various stars - Idli Malini, Garam Dharam, Shotgun Sinha.

Now I cringe whenever I read that magazine - often finding three of four paragraphs in a row that seem to be talking about wildly different things and then a fifth paragraph that ostensibly seems to "pull it all together". Self help books are liberally quoted in an attempt to help the reader connect with, you know, the star's innermost (well-imagined or fed by phone by the star's agent) feelings.

But enough friends and relatives know about my Stardust days that they'll always bring me a copy. This touches me and as a knee-jerk reaction I'll read it.

A recent returnee from the desh just got me the latest copy - it has Jiah Khan looking a little fairer than I remember her, eating fruit out of a bowl that has shiny cherries, grapes, bananas, apples and...two huge chillies. Thinking this to be a new Bollytrend, I've immediately substituted the peaches in my own fruit bowl with two Hungarian long peppers.

Also a letter from a fan - let's just call him Homi Bhabha - has been letterboxed by the editor under the title "Oh Hansika!". I quote.

Just because I'm a huge fan of Himesh Reshammiya, I bought an expensive multiplex ticket to watch his movie 'Aap Ka Surroor', as it was supposed to have all the answers behind the enigma as to why he wears a cap, why he doesn't smile, etc. After watching the film, I didn't find any reason as to why I purposely became the victim.

Ah, the perils of having rabid fans of all kinds. But wait, there is more. Homi Bhabha then reveals he is smitten by Hansika Motwani, Himesh's costar from that movie, and finds that she is called "Golden Legs in the south".

Now, I don't know who is the reigning Thunder Thighs in Tollywood, but a movie with both of them and Himesh would be fun, no? How about that sequel, Himanshu?


Anonymous said...

My fave part of Stardust of ole times was "Neeta's Natter." Now the magazine has shoddy content, is full of ads and the writing has degenerated to being amateurish. It's definitely not worth my fifty rupees.
I say that if you want a combo of entertainment and information, just go to Aspi's Drift (for free!).

Unknown said...

Mind Rush, you are too nice to me. But you'll have to forgive me for being jealous of sexy people. Heh.

ppl said...

Kudos my man. I hadn't thought that I would ever hear stardust being blogged about, but you did it. Having grown up in Surat, and being a bong I would make the summer pilgrimage to Kolkata, and the 3 day train ride saw a myriad of reading material, but nothing like stardust to whet the appetite. (which also was jacked from my mom when she dozed off)
It saddens me to hear that its bordering on nonsense now, I always preferred it over filmfare which I felt was kind of a kiss ass mag.

Anonymous said...

Idli Malini? Hahahah! I don't remember that. Sadly, these days its more likely to be an unwitting remark rather than a witty one.

Unknown said...

Was the Stardust copy a Navroz gift for you Aspi? Navroz Mubarak! Once a year, I am extremely grateful to Parsis (however sparsees you might be) - we have a public holiday!

BTW, why does Parsi New Year Day have two celebration dates - once in spring and once sometime around this time?

*~mad munky~* said...

oh boy *memories* i bought a copy the other month, first time in many years... it was still printed on that dodgy paper with the blurry photographs...

ah, the luxury of cineblitz and movie...are they still published?

i'm sure i've still got my sridevi scrapbook somewhere...i aspired to those thighs once *must be mad*

yes, that's why i'm mad munky..i suppose :oS

Unknown said...

Manish, thanks yaar. I'll dispense with the usual joke about how the future of the race depends on me. One is for the New Year (which gets celebrated in Iran too) and the other is the birthday of Z (kind of like Christmas if you will).

~mm~, hey, Sridevi had thighs to aspire to - or at least the boys used to think so.

leera, the new filmfare I saw a few months back looked glitzy and well laid out - probably still kiss-ass though because I didn't actually read it.

Unknown said...

Cine Blitz is still published, but Movie is no more.

Beth Loves Bollywood said...

I'm horrified by the writing in the Hindi film magazines. It's utter crap. What's your take? And do you think there's a market for an intelligent print publication on Bollywood? Surely....

Unknown said...

Beth, I haven't surveyed all the mags lately but if you've seen it, yikes! I can only think that in that industry a self-respecting writer wouldn't survive. Can you imagine trying to interview a star after giving their latest movie anything less than glowing reviews? Pettiness abounds.

Serious Bollywood journalism? Can happen, but not enough to sustain an entire magazine.