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17-03-06, 11:21 PM
Bollywood craze is growing in Switzerland and this craze has gone beyond ‘just a passing fad’. The trend is here to stay as many people seem to see Bollywood as an alternative to Hollywood.
More and more Hindi films are shown with German subtitles. With the increasing popularity of Hindi films, the songs are also creating a fad. Major music stores are flooded with CDs of Hindi film music. There was a time when only pirated versions of CDs were available now the most upmarket video stores are dishing out CDs of Indian films in slick packages to the Swiss public.
“The Swiss want more and more Indian films,” said an employee at a cinema about Indian films. The latest Aamir Khan’s “Rang de Basanti” drew rave reviews and audience applause. A Zurich newspaper wrote, “We had to wait long till once again a film from Aamir Khan, the star from ‘Lagaan’, comes to our cinema”. Another tabloid rated three stars to the movie - the rating that puts par with such Hollywood flicks as “Memories of a Geisha” and “Oliver Twist”.
Shah Rukh Khan is also widely recognised and his “Paheli” last year was feted with four stars. His other films “Kal Ho Na Ho”, “Main Hoon Na” and “Devdas” also stirred frenzied responses. Also Aishwarya Rai posters are a rage on the streets of Switzerland.
Swiss people find our actresses beautiful and they think that our movies have so much masala (glamour, dance, moral values, history and emotions) all packed into one film. Even students in university are crazy about dancing to Bollywood tunes, besides watching the films.
Switzerland seems to be repaying to Bollywood the popularity it has received as a site for shooting of so many films. The Swiss tourism industry is grateful to Chopra and other Bollywood directors for popularizing the country among Indian tourists, who make up one of the largest tourist groups.
The craze seems to have spilled over to neighboring Germany as well, where the popular TV channel beams Bollywood blockbusters dubbed in German at prime time. Viewers can download ring-tones of different Hindi songs on their mobile phones for three euros per downloading. The most repeated films being “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai”, “Veer-Zaara”, “Taal” and “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam”.
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