Arshad Warsi once said that, “It is not just Shah Rukh and Sex that sells in Bollywood.” While Mr. Warsi’s opinion to an extent seems right, not everybody in the film industry is of the same opinion especially the producers and creative designers of the film posters. For them, Shah Rukh may or may not sell but sex still plays a pivotal role, particularly when it comes to film promo posters.
Take the example of Balaji Film’s Dirty Picture. The day the posters of the movie came out, the public went crazy about it. The reason? Well, the posters had Vidya Balan in gaudy clothes with those red scrumptious lips welcoming all the men towards her. And if that was not less, it showed Tushar Kapoor as well as Naseeruddin Shah gaping all over her body with those lusty mouths.
Looks like for TV Czarina Ekta Kapoor, skin show in the posters is as essential as the leaps in her television programme – First she experimented with Kya Super Kool Hai Hum and now the poster of Ragini MMS 2 where a nude Sunny Leone is seen sitting with her legs and hands covering her assets says that Ekta is here to exploit women in her posters. While, Ekta might be a smart novice in this game, there are the Bhatts, the old players who have been using this formula for quite some years now. A tried and tested formula by the Bhatts, the concept of skin show in the posters has always worked for them.
If you remember Raaz 3 posters, it had evil hands covering Bipasha Basu’s asset on her bikni clad body. Her facial expression in the poster showed that she is enjoying it and wants some more. No wonder, the horror flick did a good job at the box office and even gave Bips a new beginning which she was waiting. Similar was the effect of Vikram Bhatt’s Hate Story which had a mystery girl sitting between the legs of a male facing her bare back with a gun sticking out from her tattooed buttock cleavage. The movie did not make money but it covered all the cost and investment all because of selling sex in the film posters.
Need I say why Sunny Leone was signed by the Bhatts for Jism 2? Who even cared for the film, the semi-naked Sunny with bare chest Randeep Hooda was enough to attract the public eyeballs way before the film was release. And upon its release, as expected we had people going just to have a glimpse of the porn star in her sexy avatar.
The whole concept looks like a business strategy -The film may or may not be worthy of our visit at the nearest theatre but these posters make us rush to the theatre, covering the investments in the initial 3 days itself. Aha, so to cover the investment the producers uncover the girls, makes sense!
At the cost of women and their modesty, producers manage their risk. By bringing attractive damsels in provoking dress, they illustrate women as sexual entities. The sad part is that more than 50% of the time women are objectified by women only. Ekta Kapoor and Pooja Bhatt are the two producers who do not mind selling their films by show casing their female lead merely a sexual object in their films. From biggies like Vidya Balan, Bipasha Basu to strugglers like Sunny Leone, Jacqueline Fernandez they have managed to sell their movies by illustrating these heroines as sex toys to all the lusty minds.
The reality that there is an enormous audience for such abject image of sexuality indicates how our value system is. The continuity of such illustrations signifies that one way or another we are tolerable towards it and even do not mind the entire concept of exploiting women in the posters. Even if we criticize on internet or public forums, one cannot deny the fact that even the Indian audiences are slightly perverted and the Indian producers take advantage of this fact.
Till our society do not respect women and till women themselves do not start supporting their own sexual class, women in India are ought to suffer both from abuse and various forms of dishonor. Don’t you think it is high time for the censor board to smash the impression that women are nothing but objects of lust and hunger, what do you think?
By Deepti Verma
Image Source: NDTV