Article by Apoorva Shankar

Nepotism in Bollywood has been one of the never- ending debates with major actors hinting at favoritism in the industry. Many actors including Kangana Ranaut and Tapsee Pannu have come out strongly against ‘Nepotism’ in the industry and have stated that ‘Star Kids’ take away all the limelight and ‘outsiders’ who have worked hard to make a name for themselves, often get ignored.

It is indeed true how ‘Star Kids’ have it easy in Bollywood with Karan Johar ready to launch these kids. Latest addition to the debate was done by Ananya Panday, daughter of Chunky Pandey in her latest Roundtable with Rajeev Masand. Ananya’s recent rant on nepotism drew the ire of many social media users. The actor went on the say ‘Just because my dad is an actor I would never say no to an opportunity to act. My dad has never been in Dharma film, he never went on Koffee with Karan. It is not as easy as people say. Everyone has their own journey and their own struggles’
Actor Siddhant Chaturvedi, who was also a part of the interview shut Ananya’s rant on Nepotism by saying, ‘Yes, everyone has their own struggles, but the difference is Jahan Hamare Sapne pure Hote Hain, vahan ke struggle Shuru Hota Hai’ ( their struggle begins where our dreams are fulfilled). Social media users lauded Siddhant for his quick, witty response.
Whatever the star kids might have to say in their defence, the truth is these kids have it easy in the industry. Let me give you a couple of examples. Alia Bhatt, daughter of director and producer Mahesh Bhatt bagged her first lead role in the movie ‘Student of the Year’ in 2012, a film by Dharma Production despite not having worked in movies or theater . Ananya Panday bagged thr lead role in “Student of the Year-2” in another film by Dharma Production when she was only 19 years old. Another classic example of nepotism in the industry would be Sara Ali Khan daughter of Saif Ali Khan and and Amrita Singh who debuted as a leading lady when she was 23 years old and don’t get me started on people from the Kapoor Khandaan (wink).
Star kids are always fast-tracked to lead roles in big productions without any prior work to show and, in most cases, without auditioning for their debut roles. This proves there is nothing ‘fair’ about them being launched in the first place. If countless outsiders spend years slogging it out in small films, is it fair that star kids in their early twenties get to start their careers with lead roles in plum projects?

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