Is star power taking over directors’ credits?

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DABANGG 2 which releases in the cinema halls today has been directed by Arbaaz Khan while DABANGG was directed by Abhinav Singh Kashyap, who seems to have been forgotten in the wave of DABANNG 2. DABANNG 2 has accentuated or is a sort of statement about the trend that has emerged in the industry where the star power of a star associated with a film which has become a super hit, has emerged as the driving force. So what is not important is that who is directing the film, but the image associated with the original version of the film that is to be accentuated in one form or the other.

It has something to do with the fact that a film like DABANGG has become a brand and as such efforts are being made in the world of Hindi cinema to feed, nurture and foster the brand, rather than accentuate the role of associated players who are enacting their role in strengthening the brand. So DABANGG when it is talked about, it is in context of Salman Khan and the image that he has created for himself with the film.


It is the same case with DHOOM series as well. The first part was directed by Sanjay Gadhvi. Currently shooting of DHOOM 3 is under progress but the name of the director is not being talked about, rather what is being talked about is that Aamir Khan is starring in DHOOM 3 and the whole branding of the series is being made by using the persona of Aamir as the current brand ambassador for the property called DHOOM.

One can however contrast this situation with the directors of the previous generations whose names carried weight and was in a way responsible for making the film a hit, Yash Chopra being last such examples, who was one of the stars who was instrumental in making JAB TAK HAI JAAN a 100 crore hit.


As a matter of fact this phenomenon has been an integral part of Hollywood and now its importance is started being felt in the world of Hindi cinema as an entity whose quotient of success is on a higher side on account of the brand value. JAMES BOND, SUPERMAN, BATMAN etc., are the illustrious elder brothers in the world of Hollywood for the world of Hindi cinema to look up to and a beginning in this direction has been taken by the emergence of new production houses which have an astute sense of business and therefore has taken it upon itself to resort to all kinds of processes and devices to maintain and strengthen the brand. So we have a RAAZ series being produced by Mahesh Bhatt and Mukesh Bhatt where who directs the series in succession is not important, but what is important is that the series with each release is carving an identity of its own and accentuating it as well.

It seems more a marketing dynamics, as it is marketing and the revenue that decides the course of film, that when a film evolves as a brand, one strives to maintain the affinity around the brand in one form or the other by presenting sequels. Hindi cinema has warmed up to this fact and is milking it to the hilt.

May be in 2013 we would see more such brands in cinema evolving and would facilitate in the positioning of the world of Hindi cinema in a much more profound manner, provided that the Mayans prophecy of the world coming to an end comes unstuck.

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