Saif Ali Khan’s brother-in-law, Vidyut Jammwal join nepotism debate after Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide; After Karan Johar, it’s Disney+Hotstar’s turn to face heat


The raging debate over nepotism and favouritism in Bollywood took has gained intensity after Disney+Hotstar came under widespread condemnation for leaving out lesser-known actors in its promotional event, held on Monday this week. The action by Disney+Hotstar left actors Vidyut Jammwal and Saif Ali Khan’s brother-in-law Kunal Kemmu incensed triggering another controversy in the aftermath of actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death.

Disney+Hotstar, a popular OTT platform, invited Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn Abhishek Bachchan, Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan to promote the release of a series of forthcoming films. While Akshay was there to promote his film Laxmmi Bomb, Ajay, Abhishek and Alia were present to talk about their respective films namely Bhuj, Sadak 2 and The Big Bull. Vidyut Jammwal’s Khuda Hafiz and Kunal Kemmu’s Lootcase too are releasing around the same time, but they were not invited. Varun Dhawan, the son of noted Bollywood director David Dhawan, was invited even though he doesn’t have any of his films scheduled for release.

Reacting to the news, Vidyut wrote sarcastically, “A BIG announcement for sure!!
7 films scheduled for release but only 5 are deemed worthy of representation. 2 films, receive no invitation or intimation. It’s a long road ahead. THE CYCLE CONTINUES.”

Vidyut was reacting to a tweet by Bollywood trade analyst Taran Adarsh, “BIGGG ANNOUNCEMENT… #AkshayKumar, #AjayDevgn, #AbhishekBachchan, #AliaBhatt, #VarunDhawan will be LIVE on #DisneyPlusHotstar with #UdayShankar [President, The Walt Disney Co and Chairman, Star & Disney India]… Mark your calendars: TOMORROW, Monday, 29 June 2020, 4.30 pm.”

Genelia Deshmukh tweeted in support of Vidyut, “Every film is made with a lot of love, a lot of sweat & a lot people giving it their all. Its only fair to want a little respect, its only fair to expect an invitation, its only fair to have at least been intimated.But then, sometimes even life is not fair. keep walking my friend.”

In her subsequent tweet she wrote, “More power to you….. @VidyutJammwal.”

Kunal Kemmu, Saif Ali Khan’s brother-in-law, too tweeted without making any direct references to anyone, “Izzat aur pyaar maanga nahi kamaya jaata hai. Koi na de toh usse hum chhote nahi hote. Bas maidaan khelne ke liye barabar de do chhalaang hum bhi oonchi laga sakte hai (Respect and love are not bought. If someone doesn;t gibe you (respect and love), then it doesn’t belittle us. Just give us a level playing field. Even we are capable of taking a long leap.”

Sushant’s body was found hanging inside his house on 14 June. The 34-year-old actor from Bihar had made his Bollywood debut with Kai Po Che before acting in successful films such as MS Dhoni: The Untold Story, PK, Raabta and Kedarnath among others.

Sushant’s death has triggered an intense debate over the preferential treatment being accorded to Bollywood’s ‘insiders’ at the expense of ‘outsiders’ who are mostly lesser-known actors. Angry fans had launched a widespread campaign to boycott Karan Johar, Yash Raj Films, Salman Khan while millions of social media users unfollowed several big Bollywood stars.


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