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Bollywoodisation of news

Enkayaar, Bollywood Trade News Network
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Surf any television channel, more so the Indian news channels in the private realm, and it would be found that the news, gossips and other information related to Hindi film industry per se, and the film industry in general have now carved out a prominent niche for themselves. Such is the importance being given to the news related to Hindi film industry aka Bollywood that a Professor in England has coined a term "Bollywoodisation". In his seminal work, "News as Entertainment; The rise of Global Entertainment", Daya K. Thussu, who is the Professor at the University of Westminster, London, has brought into popular lexicon the word, Bollywoodisation as he is of the opinion it is now Bollywood which dominates the news that matters, and in every news programme there is one segment which exclusively deals with the tits bits on Bollywood.

According to Prof. Thussu present day news is dominated by three C's, Cinema, Cricket and Crime and of these three, it is Cinema, which is the binding element. If one were to view the news as it is happening these days, it would become clear that the premise that has been now given a formal shape by Prof. Thussu is in existence indeed for quite a long time. Cinema and cricket have converged to become two sides of the same coin, so if Deepika Padukone went to Australia, it was linked with her supposed interest in Yuvraj and Dhoni, and in fact this convergence found its echo in the mainstream print media news as well. It was print media which had started this trend of setting into main relief the news related to cinema and television has just picked it up from there.

Probably nowhere in the world could one find a prime time slot of news channel dedicated wholly and solely to news stories related to films, but Headlines Today underlining the importance that cinema related news has for the public carved this slot. Nine pm slot being the prime time slot and the time when people would be having dinner, they would not be interested in hard core news, but light entertainment and hence the strategy of Headlines Today can be considered a master stroke. Other television news channels are also not behind but they have not taken this radical step of converting a prime time slot of 9 pm into entertainment slot. It is the economics that seems to be the guiding trend.

While cinema has usurped the hardcore news slot and carved a prime time niche for itself, to be taken up seriously it needs to focus on the serious aspects related to motion pictures. Once this is done, then the windfall would be just around the corner.



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