Arunima Gupta of the nonprofit cultural organization Network of Indian Cultural Enterprises discusses shifts in the global creative economy, its value and a case study from India.
Hiroyoshi Takeda is not a typical Japanese man. Instead of a suit and tie, the 39-year-old Tokyoite wears T-shirts with technicolour caricatures of a mustachioed south Indian movie star. Rather than bowing, he dances. He doesn’t ride the metro, but travels the streets in a gaudily adorned autorickshaw imported from Tamil Nadu.
Xi Jinping and Narendra Modi were apparently talking movies, among other things, at a summit in Kazakhstan on Friday. Xi mentioned that he, like millions of Chinese, had enjoyed the hit Bollywood film Dangal. Xi and Modi went on to discuss boosting cultural cooperation between the two countries. [...] Dangal is still screening across China at more than 7,000 cinemas.Its success follows a string of other Bollywood films that have won over Chinese audiences in recent years, including the previous biggest hit, PK, which took in 118 million yuan.
The biggest box office stars don’t always hail from the US, they come from other places, too. Beyoncé, the internationally famous and quite possibly most talked-about woman in the world, has about 14.7 million Twitter followers. She’s ranked at, roughly, the 119th most popular person on Twitter. Shakira, the Colombian-born pop star, has a whopping 45.2 million Twitter followers. She’s about 18th on the Twitter popularity scale. [...] This is not to say that American movie stars are not popular, it's just that the Hollywood's near monopoly for almost a century is lo longer in effect.
Dangal’s success story in China — coming as it does, five months after its theatrical release in India and elsewhere — has triggered a stream of breathless box office updates, analytical thinkpieces, and odes aplenty. As it should. [...] Egyptian hawkers referring to Indian women visitors as “Kareena! Aishwarya!” isn't surprising. But to have a teenager from the tiny island country of Timor Leste tell you that Preity Zinta’s Kya Kehna is his favourite film, or have folks in Vietnam express sadness about Balika Vadhu actress Pratyusha Banerjee’s suicide — that is surreal.
Bollywood’s global popularity and the ‘Cool Japan’ initiative are highlighted in this week’s roundup.