Bollywood vs. Hollywood: Have Indian stars finally made their mark in Hollywood?

Bollywood star Priyanka Chopra has plenty of experience of red carpets but this weekend was different. Rather than the usual gala premieres, she posed for hundreds of flashing cameras outside the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood before presenting a golden statuette to Margaret Sixel, Best Film Editing for Mad Max: Fury Road at the 2016 Oscars.
For many, her presence at this glittering event, officially announced the arrival of Indian actors in the Hollywood big leagues. But it’s been a long time coming.
Diversity was the hot topic before and at this year’s Academy Awards. Director Spike Lee and actress Jada Pinkett-Smith boycotted the ceremony over lack of diversity among nominees, sparking the #OscarsSoWhite campaign. And while Indian actors or actresses have yet to win at the Oscars, their rise in American films and Hollywood overall can’t be overlooked.
Presenting an award at the Oscars is an honour reserved for the select few. It comes hot on the heels of Chopra, 33, becoming the first Indian ever to win a People’s Choice Award for her role in US television show Quantico for which she was reportedly paid $4m. Chopra will also star alongside Hollywood heavyweight Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson in the much-anticipated Baywatch movie.
Over the last decade as Hollywood film storylines and cast have become more diverse, career opportunities are finally opening up to this wider pool of talent. As Hollywood casts its net wider India’s talent is benefitting but how well are they being paid?
Eye on the profit pie
Hollywood’s motivation for this crossover into India’s film royalty is partly a shrewd business calculation by film studios and distributors.
“It’s always about the money” said Suhel Seth, managing partner at consultancy firm Counselage India who is also an occasional actor with cameos in several Bollywood blockbusters. “As the Indian diaspora across the world gains more economic stature, there’s an urge for Hollywood producers and foreign studios to then also cater to that market.” US film companies see incorporating popular Indian actors and actresses into their productions as a significant opportunity to reach much bigger audiences in emerging markets.
India represents a vast market of English speakers and a huge untapped opportunity, said Mumbai-based Anirban Das Blah, founder of CAA KWAN, a talent management company that represents several Bollywood stars.
India’s own movie industry produces more than 1,000 films a year, and, together with television and media industries, is projected by KPMG to be worth $28.7bn by 2019. There’s a huge appetite for films in a country with more than a billion people, which analysts expect to mean more multiplex cinemas will be built and more Indians will start regularly viewing through digital media.
“In less than a decade the market could be anything from 20 times to 50 times its current size,” Das Blah said.
A growing demand amongst Indian moviegoers for cinema with less formulaic plots and more global themes is also driving change. “Both the context and the craft have altered to suit more diverse palates, which includes the American palate, the American studio palate,” Seth said.
Breaking barriers
Crossover stars from India are muscling their way in to an industry that has come under fire for being too white — a recent BBC report citing University of Southern California research on Hollywood’s “inclusion crisis” underlined the scale of the problem
Leading the pack is actor Irrfan Khan, 49, who has done more than 100 films during his career, the bulk in Bollywood. He has also spent a decade working in American studio and TV productions. Khan rose to prominence in the US after playing a policeman in the hit movie Slumdog Millionaire, which swept the Academy Awards in 2009 winning eight gold statuettes. His most recent outing was in the Universal Pictures- blockbuster, Jurassic World, which took in a record $511m at the box office in its opening week.
Khan and Chopra have opened the gate wider for younger Indian actors like Deepika Padukone, 30, to make their mark. Padukone has just bagged the lead in xXx: The Return of Xander Cage, where she’s paired up with action film veteran, Vin Diesel.
Indian faces have become more visible on prime time TV too. Nimrat Kaur and Suraj Sharma (Homeland), Kunal Nayyar (The Big Bang Theory), and veteran Indian actor Anil Kapoor (24) have all appeared on shows that have been global hits, partly driven by the rise of binge-watching via streaming services like Netflix and Hulu.
A change of heart?
For many years, Hollywood seemed to hire Indian actors to portray stereotypical parts. Offensive caricatures were common as recently as the late 1990s. “Hollywood is like any other business that has to continue to grow, or be eaten up,” Khan said. “Television and films are flourishing industries in America and they keep looking for new markets.”
Before India, it was all about China, “so Hollywood was incorporating Chinese actors, location, and technicians,” said Khan.
Films like Slumdog Millionaire (2008) helped sell and showcase India to Hollywood heavyweights. “When India-centric films like The Namesake and Slumdog Millionaire came out, they became popular and changed everything,” said Khan. “The entire American entertainment industry started looking at India as a potential new market to explore, and started accepting more stories with the Indian backdrop.”
Big film houses like Fox and Paramount are attempting to offer variety and continue to look for new ground for their stories, said Khan, who stars alongside Tom Hanks in Inferno, due out later this year.
Does Hollywood mean big bucks?
While they’re on the screen, fame and fortune in Hollywood still isn’t bringing in the millions for Indian arrivals. There’s a general consensus among film stars, agents and publicists that Indian actors are not as well paid as US or European actors for comparable work.
Khan, who earned just under $2m in 2015, according to Forbes, said leading Indian actors will make anything from $750,000 to $5m per film in Bollywood.
“For Hollywood films, I don’t get even one fourth of the fee I charge in India,” Khan said. “It’s only when you’re playing the lead in a Hollywood film and you command a wider world market [audience] that you’ll be paid big bucks.”
Seth said while the pay disparity is problematic, the exposure can pay off bigger for Bollywood stars crossing over to American film.  “What Indian actors also gain is a greater brand recognition, which helps them bolster their image and allows them to appeal to a wider international market,” he said.
India’s highest paid actresses Chopra and Padukone have powerful Hollywood agents who ensure their clients get casting calls for films with big names and budgets.
That has boosted their earning power in some instances. Chopra, who charges nearly $1m for her Bollywood projects, was reportedly paid $4m for her Quantico gig.
Big Bang Theory actor Kunal Ayyar, however, takes the salary prize. Born in Britain and raised in India, Ayyar was third on the Forbes list of World’s Highest-Paid TV Actors for 2015 with earnings that topped $20 million.     —BBC

The Best 10 Worldwide Bollywood Movies

The Hindi film industry “Bollywood” is the world’s largest film production center. The first feature film (silent black-and-white) produced in India was the “Raja Harishchandra” produced by Dadasaheb Phalke in 1913. With the passage of time, the industry expanded and the number of films produced.

 

From the 1960s, the industry achieved major commercial success more regularly, and the revenue earned multiplied manifold; The 1975 film ‘Sholay’ earned triple the amount that the previous record-holder 1960s Mughal-e-Azam earned, while Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! (1994) more than quadrupled Sholay’s record. Post the “dark phase” of the 1980s, business increased tremendously as is visible from the major success of films like Hum Aapke Hain Koun..!, Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge and Gadar: Ek Prem Katha.

 

Initially, the success of a film was determined by box office longevity than revenue. However, due to increasing competition from television and the threat of piracy, and later the advent of alternative media, longevity of films decreased drastically and revenue became the focus of success.

 

Below is a list of top ten highest grossing worldwide Bollywood movies of all time. Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! (released in 1994) was the first Bollywood film to cross INR 1 billion (US$15 million) worldwide.

 

  1. PK (Peekay)

 

Budget 85 c, Gross: 792 c, India: 489 c, Overseas: 303 c

 

PK is all set to create history by entering the 300 crore club by the end of its 3rd Sunday run. PK,  so far, has collected 326 crores nett at the Domestic Box Office, which takes its Gross total to 470c. And on the overseas front, the movie has earned 156 c gross, that takes its Worldwide gross business to 626 crores at the Box Office. The film stars Aamir Khan in the title role, with Anushka Sharma, Sushant Singh Rajput, Boman Irani, Saurabh Shukla, and Sanjay Dutt in supporting roles.

 

The film opened in 22 international markets during its opening weekend and grossed $28.7 million placing at #3 at the worldwide box office behind The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies and Gone with the Bullets. In North America, the film set an opening weekend record with $3.75 million (previously held by Dhoom 3) placing at #10 at the box office.

  1. Dangal

 

Budget- 70 crore, Gross- 728.26 crore,  India: 529.53c, Overseas: 198.73c

 

Star Cast: Aamir Khan, Sakshi Tanwar, Fatima Sana Shaikh, Sanya Malhotra, Zaira Wasim and Suhani Bhatnagar.

 

Dangal was released in the United States on 21 December 2016 and worldwide on 23 December 2016. The film was shown on an estimated 4300 screens in India and 1000 screens internationally.

 

  1. Bajrangi Bhaijaan

Budget- 90 crores, Gross: 626 c, India: 433 c, Overseas: 193 c

Releasing on Eid 2015, Salman Khan’s “Bajrangi Bhaijaan” beats ‘Happy New Year’, ‘3 Idiots’ lifetime earnings. The film has become the first Bollywood film of 2015 to cross ₹300 crore with its net collection at the domestic box office. The movie took just 9 days to earn ₹200 crore from its domestic box office run. It is the third fastest film after “PK” and “Dhoom 3” to earn ₹200 crore in just nine days.

  1. Sultan

Budget- 70c, Gross- 589 c, India: 420.65 c, Overseas: 168 c

Star Cast: Salman Khan, Anushka Sharma, Amit Sadh, Randeep Hooda.

 

Sultan is a mixed bag of emotion, action, love and of course Salman Khan. Directed by Ali Abbas Zafar. Produced by Aditya Chopra under the Yash Raj Films banner. The film focuses on Sultan Ali Khan, a fictional wrestling champion from Haryana whose successful career creates a rift in his personal life.

  1. Dhoom 3: Back in Action

Budget 1.5 billion (US$23 million) Gross- 542c,      India: 372c,       Overseas: 170c

 

Aamir Khan and Katrina Kaif starrer Dhoom 3 is breaking all records in India and overseas. Dhoom 3 became the highest grossing Bollywood film in India and around the world by collecting over 533 cr (US$85 million) worldwide in just two weeks. The film beat the INR3.95 billion (US$60 million) record set by Chennai Express according to Box Office India.

 

  1. Chennai Express

 

Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone in Chennai Express Movie Release Posters

Budget- 75c,     Gross- 422c,      India: 301c,       Overseas: 121c

Chennai Express is a 2013 Indian romantic action-comedy film directed by Rohit Shetty and produced by Gauri Khan under the banner Red Chillies Entertainment. The film stars Shahrukh Khan and Deepika Padukone in lead roles. The film currently the highest-grossing Bollywood film of 2013. The film broke the record held by 3 Idiots (2009) in the domestic market and was declared a Blockbuster in India by Box Office India. It is also the third highest-grossing Bollywood film in overseas markets. Chennai Express went on to become the highest-grossing Bollywood film worldwide, surpassing 3 Idiots. With worldwide gross INR 422 crore (US$65 million).

 

  1. Prem Ratan Dhan Payo

 

Budget- 80c, Gross- 399c, India: 305c, Overseas: 93.70c

 

  1. 3 Idiots

 

Budget- 35 crores,      Gross- 395c,      India: 269c,     Overseas: 126c

Since the year 2013, the film was at top the list of highest grossing worldwide Bollywood movies. The recard was first breaked by Chennai Express than Dhoom 3 and than PK. Now 3 Idiots is at number 6 in the list with worldwide gross INR 395 crore (US$60 million). It is a 2009 Indian comedy-drama film directed by Rajkumar Hirani, with a screenplay by Abhijat Joshi, and produced by Vidhu Vinod Chopra. 3 Idiots stars Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, R. Madhavan, Sharman Joshi, Omi Vaidya, Parikshit Sahni and Boman Irani.

 

  1. Happy New Year

 

Budget- INR 1.50 billion, Gross- 385 c, India: 295c, Overseas: 90c

Directed by Farah Khan and produced by Gauri Khan, Happy New Year had a bumper opening on day one setting new record by collecting around INR450 million (US$7.3 million) nett, making it the first Bollywood film to reach the figure for a single day. The film released on Diwali, 24 October 2014, in three different languages: Hindi, Tamil and Telugu. The film starer Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Sonu Sood, Boman Irani, Vivaan Shah and Jackie Shroff. HNY became the 9th Highest grossing worldwide Bollywood movies and collected around INR 383 crore.

 

  1. Dilwale (2015)

 

Budget- 100 crore, Gross- 381 c, India: 213c, Overseas: 168.58c

Star Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Varun Dhawan, Kriti Sanon, Johnny Lever, Varun Sharma, Boman Irani, Sanjay Mishra.. Director: Rohit Shetty.

 

Highest Grossing Worldwide Bollywood Movies

 

  1. PK (2014) – ₹ 792.00 crore
  2. Dangal (2016) – ₹728.26 crore
  3. Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015) – ₹ 626.00 crore
  4. Sultan (2016) – ₹ 589.00 crore
  5. Dhoom3 (2013) – ₹ 542.00 crore
  6. Chennai Express (2013) – ₹422.00 crore
  7. Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (2015) – ₹399.00 crore
  8. 3 Idiots (2009) – ₹395.00 crore
  9. Dilwale (2015) – ₹394.00 crore
  10. Happy New Year (2014) – ₹385.00 crore
  11. Kick (2014) – ₹377.00 crore
  12. Krrish 3 (2013) – ₹374.00 crore
  13. Bajirao Mastani (2015) – ₹367.00 crore
  14. Bang Bang (2014) – ₹340.00 crore
  15. Ek Tha Tiger (2012) – ₹320.00 crore
  16. Yeh Jawaani Hain Deewaani (2013) – ₹318.00 crore
  17. Dabangg 2 (2012) – ₹265.00 crore
  18. Tanu Weds Manu Returns (2015) – ₹258.00 crore
  19. Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016) – ₹242.50 crore
  20. Jab Tak Hai Jaan (2012) – ₹241.00 crore
  21. Airlift (2016) – ₹231.60 crore
  22. Rustom (2016) – ₹218.80 crore

How to stop isps slow youtube

I’ve had TWC for over a year and have been frustrated at the shockingly slow YouTube performance. I never had issues with other streaming, downloads, or web browseing, so I simply shrugged it off and continued with life. A few days ago I came across this video and some discussions on Reddit which prompted me to explore further.

A few terminal commands later and I was back to blazingly fast YouTube streaming. Doing this will cause the stream to take 1-2 seconds to start because of the IP rejection handling, but then you are greeted with a silky smooth, ultra-fast experience.

Open up your terminal and run these commands (you will be prompted for the admin password):

sudo ipfw add reject src-ip 173.194.55.0/24 in
sudo ipfw add reject src-ip 206.111.0.0/16 in

You can check the rules were added by using this command:

sudo ipfw list

Why do these commands create a better streaming experience? TWC is throttling downloads from servers (CDN) that host cached videos. By rejecting these IP address ranges you will force the video to be served to you directly. This harnesses the full download speed of your internet connection. Other people can dive into the complexity much better than I ever could, but that’s the overall theme.

If you’re not using a Mac, here’s some tips to make this work:

  • Linux – instead of ipfw use iptables command
  • Windows – check out this guide
  • Multiple computers – configure the IP blocks via your router.

Did this trick work for you?

EDIT: Great discussion happening over at Hacker News that points to this not being TWC specific. Before posting I did test two other Verizon connections and found that they did not have YouTube issues, so I crafted the title. I feel that the title no longer specifically applies to TWC, and it’s been edited as such.