Bollywood is a billion-dollar industry that is ruled by stars. Here, film stars get so many opportunities to grow as powerful as the controller of the whole industry, i.e., from filmmaking to exhibition, casting, and distribution. Sometimes, their relatives and their own children are idolized so well with a huge fan-following. But it doesn’t mean an outsider cannot grow with their talents. Apart from acting skills, good looks, and talents, having a “godfather” or being a part of the “film fraternity” may get you the best foot forward. In the end, the audience is the winner. The public doesn’t care if someone is an outsider or a star kid. One who performs well and the one who deserves success finally.
Step-by-Step Guide to Make it to Bollywood
So, where to get started?
Start your Research
Don’t fall to someone who says, “Bollywood has work for everyone who gets there.” Just going there won’t get you work. You have to approach the right people, make your own presence, and hope for the best. First of all, assess yourself as what makes you a film actor. Note down your positive and negative points. What opportunities can you get? What are your challenges? Try to remain calm.
Of course, you may have a lack of confidence that you don’t look like a hero. But admit it, there are so many examples known for their excellent acting, not their looks. There’s always hope. Ask your friends in the industry, stay ahead with the latest industry trends, and keep an eye on new releases.
Know your timeline
Getting into Bollywood, attending auditions for so long, and waiting for the ample opportunity forever doesn’t make any sense. A lot of star aspirants make this mistake. Many aspiring actors have privileges like a generous family member or a passive income from rented property or investment.
But you will realize, at some point, that things are getting worse. Be practical about “how long is too long” to wait and make your mark. How many years can you spare for struggle – one year, two, or five years? Your answer depends upon how many resources you have. How much can you afford to invest? Decide on your budget and be with it.
Keep in mind that the cost of living in Mumbai is too high. Expenses for an actor even double up as certain things related to their lifestyle count – the gym they choose, the restaurants and clubs they visit, their connections, the society they live in, the accessories they use, the car they drive, etc. Sometimes, you have to create an image of a celebrity before you become one.
Work on your language skills
If you have grown up watching Bollywood films, you already know what kind of Hindi is spoken in movies. We are not talking about doing a Ph.D. in Hindi literature or learning the casual street-spoken ‘Khari Boli.’ We are talking about an unusual combination of various Hindi dialects and an intense Urdu accent. No matter your place of origin, brush up your Hindi with an experienced Bollywood pronunciation coach. Even better, you can join films online acting courses where you can learn a complete package of acting skills which also includes a neutral Hindi accent. You can rest assured with one-on-one attention.
Network with others
Do you ever wish to get audition calls? Be recommended by someone when it comes to choosing a cast for a film? Connect with the movers and shakers in B-town? Be an eye candy for a top director? Well, don’t stay hidden. Circulate, befriend others, move out, and build conversations. You will be lost in the crowd if you are not heard or seen.
Don’t let any invitation go out of your hands, whether from a birthday bash, Mahurat (film launch event), special screening, seminar, ramp shows, jubilee celebration, or premiere night. You never know who you will come across, when, how, and where you could get your breakthrough.