Dear Asseem Chabbra,
Although I am addressing this letter to you, I am really aiming this at every english language media/showbiz type that has some desi connection in the US. You could be an agent (or an employee of one) or a publicist(or a wannabe publicist) a student or recent graduate from a media institution rubbing your nose against the big buildings in burbank wondering what you need to do to be able to wear a power suit and enter the hallowed studio city pub and bar scene . You could be one of Big Cinema’s chosen ones trying to make your desi popular cinema point in the US .
Whichever you are, my plea is to you, because Asseem chabbra, I know this about you(all). You can be a complete arsehole just because.
I have seen you take and trash Sanjay leela bhansali’s Devdas when it first showed so badly that the reviews didn’t resemble the film. I have seen you write dogmatic attacks on “nehruvian socialism” (just because the flavor of the month was film crit inspired by Austrian economics) against films like Vidhu vinod chopra’s Ekalavya (the royal guard) which , come on wasn’t THAT bad…and I ve seen you cringe (pretty artificially) because Morning raga’s producers decided to submit it (as a small independent film) for the Oscars on their own (the very temerity of this little runt film to stand up against US?! ) . I have seen article after article attacking with boring regularity film after film that the India’s (government owned , NFDC produced, communist, not from privately financed profit oriented Big studio created) art establishments have sent to the oscars without quite understanding the game you, quite obviously know, Asseem chabbra, to play , mumbai mirror smears and all.
The poor (bastards?) in india labor under the illusion , as does the Indian public , that submitting a good film to the Oscars is the way to win a foreign language oscar. They seem oblivious to the whole “Harvey Weinstein, press junket, Isreal lobby, catch the voter’s attention with a politically (and economically?) correct message” technique of selling foreign language Oscar nominee, pathetically laboring under the delusion that you (yes YOU! Asseem chabbra) the brownskinned pimp in the mean streets of US showbiz will keep their virginal product safe through the lonely Oscar Night.
And they never learn.
After Shwaas (which was in the competition section at cannes as well) , after Harischandrachi factory, after Taare Zameen par..every one a worthy nominee from India, they never learn that you , asseem chabbra, are deeply embarrassed by the country(dare I say YOUR country’s) choice of films to send to your prom. They never get that you are embarrased that a small sincere well made film is put out there as representing the sixtyfucking four dollar you in your little black dress and designer perfume.
They don’t get that mamma is not supposed to be at this party where you are trying to get laid by the Donald.
So please forgive mamma yet again and spare her of the humiliation of your opinion. I do realize that the more embarrassing thing for you is if the film nominated this time wins. (You’ll feel like a latino star whose illegal housekeeper is being applauded by his peers. ) So Asseem Chabbra, this is my appeal to you. please spare adamnte makan abu(the movie nominated for the oscars from India this year) the benefit of your fucking analysis. we know that you are a hotshot journalist…ad exec…publicist….whatever. We know your analytic skills, now in the pay of some fucking rich person that pays your way , are considerable and focused . We know you are a man of consequence in society, and are a capitalist big swinging dick. Just spare us your opinion and shut the crap up, this time?
Adamnte makan Abu , from all reports is a sincere fresh faced film shot breathtakingly beautifully and with a simple message that creeps up on you and teaches you a thing or two about everything from life to cinema. It can do without advice on how it should be marketed. From where I sit India has done right just nominating this film for the oscars (not because it’s likely to win, it has a small snowflakes chance there, but because its the right thing to do. If a film has to carry a nation’s hopes and dreams, I had rather that it represents THEM when it won, than it represents some Alien outsourced production values, as was the case with Slumdog and A R Rahman).
Don’t even wish the film good luck, Asseem Chabbra, just write about LAdy Ga Ga and shah rukh khan…. or something…..
Mr Chhabra tweeted this to some of his followers in response to my post:” But he’s devoted to a film that he hasn’t seen – I love that!”
My response: I understand that not everyone is blessed with a bright intelligent mind and can necessarily grasp situations (or blog posts) well, but this isn’t about **liking** or ** being devoted** to Adam…abu as much as (like the title says) **allowing the film to have a chance**
Obviously , also, This blog post isn’t about asseem chabbra alone, nescesarily,either….(just as “rush limbaugh is a big fat idiot” was about rush, but more generally about AM radio pundits)