April 5, 2011 03:45:16 PM IST Rajesh Kumar Singh, Glamsham Editorial
They will do anything to win public adulation. In spite of their professed personal friendship, their innate desire to be one up on the other, steal the limelight, take the centre stage, and stay at the top of the popularity chart is intense. This only shows they are as human as anyone else and part of the same media driven rat race.
The ICC Cricket World Cup was no different and the apparent winner in this race was Aamir Khan who left the other Khans, the Bachchans, and even the Gandhis far behind gasping for breath. Among the Khans, the one who would have felt the pinch the most was Shahrukh Khan who has been promoting his film RA.ONE during the important world cup matches. The only Khan who was conspicuous by his absence was Salman Khan. He is probably still not too comfortable with the idea of blatant self-promotion using every available platform.
AAMIR KHAN and KIRAN RAO
Everyone tried hard to share the glory and make his/ her media presence felt. Sonia Gandhi, the Bachchans, and SRK came out on the streets after the win waving the tricolour atop the bonnets of their cars, with the media in tow. Rahul Gandhi ate in a Chowpaati eatery and sat in a Wankhede stand for commoners and his over-enthusiastic media managers ensured that even the details of the food he ate and the bill he paid got reported in the media including the joyful comments from the eatery's waiters for having served the Prince of India.
However, it was Aamir who got the best of PR mileage going by the widespread media coverage given to his presence at the Indo-Pak semi-final at Mohali and Indo-Sri Lanka final at Wankhede. Aamir came across as the 16th man of the invincible team of Dhoni's dhurandhars that lifted the 2011 ICC World Cup. He was with the team all the time, even in the dressing room after the historic win, and had the rare privilege of being the only Bollywood star who touched and lifted the coveted World Cup in his hands. He partied with the team till the wee hours, dancing, drinking, and sharing every moment of their triumph. And the media devotedly reported every bit of information about him. If SRK owns an IPL team, it seemed the world cup winning Indian team owned Aamir and ipso-facto was owned by him.
The latest news is that Aamir even beats Dhoni and Sachin in the endorsements race, commanding a whopping Rs.14 crores annual price tag while Dhoni, Sachin, and Shah Rukh are worth 10 crores each. It is quite a coincidence that the news appears exactly at the same time when Dhoni and Sachin are basking under the glory of their latest world cup win and hoping to enhance their brand value.
(Rajesh Kumar Singh is Editorial Consultant for Festivals and Markets forBollywoodTrade.com. He is a filmmaker, critic and market analyst)