Um artigo do Economist de sexta-feira passada fala da importância de Chirnajeevi (de seu nome Konidela Shiva Shankara Vara Prasad) nas próximas eleições em Andhra Pradesh. É um famoso actor de Tollywood (atenção que há dois Tollywoods – neste caso é o cinema telugu de AP, o maior a seguir a Bollywood, mas Tollywood também pode ser o cinema bengali baseado perto de Calcutá…).
Para confundir ainda mais, faço um pequeno desvio para sublinhar como é enorme esta família Wood na Índia: também há Kollywood, dos estúdios em Kodambakkama, no Tamil Nadu (mas não confundir com o Kollywood na nepalesa Kathmandu…); Punjwood, no Punjab; Ollywood, de Orissa; Sandalwood no Karnataka – nome excelente..; e por fim, no Paquistão temos Pollywood (cinema urdu de Peshawar), Kariwood (Karachi) e Lolywood (Lahore), e ainda Dallywood, de Dakha no Bangladesh… O cinema de três estados, Bihar, Assam e Kerala, tal como o cinema marathi, por azar instalado em Mumbai, onde não há lugar para mais -woods, não foram contemplados com este apelido….
“Troubled actor Sanjay Dutt became the latest Bollywood star to join politics with the Samajwadi Party named him as its candidate from the Lucknow Lok Sabha constituency in the general elections later this year. Sanjay will be contesting from a constituency that has long been represented by former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee of the Bharatiya Janata Party and who has opted out of the race on health grounds. “Sanjay has a good chance in Lucknow. With the Samajwadi Party naming him, Lucknow will witness a star contesting the election for the fourth time. However, on earlier occasions, no film star was successful in winning from this constituency,” a Lucknow-based political analyst, said. “However, Sanjay has very good chances of winning because he has some roots in the city. After the partition of the country, his father Sunil Dutt came here with his family and lived in old Lucknow for a few years.”
Thus, actors turning into politicians is not an uncommon trend in India.
Tamil superstar Maruthur Gopala Ramachandran (MGR) was perhaps the first one to enter the political domain. After reaching dizzying heights as an actor, he forayed into politics with the regional DMK party(Federação do progresso Dravidiano) in 1953.
MGR became the Tamil Nadu chief minister in 1977 and remained in office for a decade till his death in 1987.
Following in the footsteps of the senior actors, many southern stars like Rajnikant, Chirnajeevi, Mammootty, Vijay Kant, Sharath Kumar and Rajkumar too have traversed the political path.
Bollywood`s evergreen star Dev Anand laid the foundation by floating his own party during the Emergency in 1975. Angered by the then minister for information and broadcasting VC Shukla`s attempts to browbeat film personalities, he formed the National Party of India to protect the fundamental rights of citizens. However, Dev Anand couldn`t keep the party going because of his film commitments and had to dissolve it.
The trend continued when Bollywood’s then “angry young man” Amitabh Bachchan came into politics at the behest of good friend and former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi. He contested the Lok Sabha election from his native Allahabad in 1984 and though he won by a huge majority, he failed to make his mark as a politician. Amitabh Bachchan registered a landslide victory, but this was attributed only to his superstar image.
Amitabh`s unceremonious departure didn`t deter others from testing the waters. The list of actors is long and has names like Vyjanthimala, Rajesh Khanna, Shatrughan Sinha, Raj Babbar, Jayaprada, Jaya Bachchan, Hema Malini, Dharmendra, Govinda and Poonam Dhillon.Lesser-known TV actors too tried their luck in politics. They include Nitish Bhardwaj and the current entrant from small screen Smriti Irani, known for her role in long running TV soap “Kyunkii Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thii”.
However, hopes are high from Sanjay Dutt, whose father was successful politican and central minister, with his younger sister Priya Dutt, a Congress MP from South Mumbai, carrying forward the legacy.
Nota importante de roda-pé: “Sanjay, who had led a chequered life more dramatic than some of his films, was convicted for possessing illegal firearms ahead of the 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai. He is currently out on bail and his petition challenging his conviction is pending in the Supreme Court.”…