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The second coming

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By: Shweta Vepa, IndiaFM

Thursday, June 22, 2006

They say God helps those who help themselves. But in the case of Bollywood, success would probably be determined by 20 % hard work and 80% luck. It's all about being at the right place at the right time. Everyone from the smallest of junior artists to the biggest of superstars put in as much effort. Yet, it is a selected few that make it to the top. However, life and fate is not always unkind. It sometimes does give a second chance, to those who failed to make it in Round 1. And it's that one film or decision that finally makes or breaks someone's career.

It's not only the newcomers but even the biggest of stars, who have seen the downside of filmdom. Amitabh Bachchan, the biggest star of them all, too is not a stranger to flops. It was just at the corner of the new millennium that his career was in a lean phase with films like Lal Badshaah, Mrityudaata, Sooryavansham and Hindustan Ki Kasam. But his lucky break proved to be the legendary Kaun Banega Crorepati,. In terms of his films, he struck back in a big way with Yash Chopra's Mohabbatein. His son Abhishek too, didn't have it easy. It was after an unbelievable spate of 13 flops that Mani Ratnam's Yuva, finally happened. The rest, as we all know is history.

Hrithik Roshan had a dream debut with Kaho Naa... Pyaar Hai. Apart from the enormous collections, it was also responsible for turning Hrithik Roshan into an overnight star. Unfortunately, he could not repeat the same level of success. After films like Yaadein, Aap Mujhe Achche Lagne Lage, Na Tum Jaano Na Hum, Mujhse Dosti Karoge and Main Prem Ki Diwani Hoon, people tagged him as a one film wonder. Except for the one saving grace of Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham in between. And then came Koi Mil Gaya, which catapulted him back to the big league. Not only was the film a huge commercial success, but his performance too was greatly appreciated.

Viveik Oberoi was touted as the next-big-thing and even an answer to Hrithik Roshan when Company released. Road, Dum, Darna Mana Hai, Kisna, Home Delivery, Pyare Mohan followed and the guy who exuded a lot of attitude in his debut, faded away subsequently. Saathiya and Kaal worked but Viveik is still looking for that elusive hit. With a lineup of interesting films coming ahead, hope he moves over the one-film-wonder tag.

When talking about Viveik, how can we miss talking about this man? If there's anyone who has been the media's favorite bashing boy, it has to be Salman Khan. And the glossies and channels alike had a field day just before the release of Tere Naam. The reason being that the notorious Khan had been embroiled in one controversy after the other from Aishwarya Rai to the hit and run case, to name a few. Add to that, even his recent spate of movies weren't doing well. Remember films like Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam, Tumko Na Bhool Paayenge , Yeh Hai Jalwa etc? But then came along Tere Naam which proved all his detractors wrong. His career has only looked up since.

Another Khan to be completely written off was Saif Ali Khan, following duds like and Hum Se Badhkar Kaun. But it was just that one film which made all the difference. The film was Farhan Akhtar's Dil Chahta Hai which gave a new lease to his career. Post that he had all the big banners vying for him. He emerged as a Khan to reckon with. He was a part of big grossers like Hum Tum, Kal Ho Na Ho, Salaam Namaste and most recently Parineeta. All it took for him to get noticed again was Dil Chahta Hai. And while on the topic Salaam Namaste, it proved to be the second lucky break of Javed Jaffrey, as well. So much so, that he even won an IIFA Award this year, for his performance. It was the first award he ever won for acting.

After the entire controversy that Sanjay Dutt was embroiled in since the jail episode, Sanjay Dutt went through a very low phase, both personally and professionally. Mahaanta, Vijeta, Daud, Safari, Kartoos - nothing seemed to work for him. Until he gave his lifetime performance in Mahesh Manjrekar's Vaastav that re-established his position as one of biggest stars of Bollywood! Also Vaastav fetched him his first ever award after spending 20 years in the industry.

His good friend, Arshad Warsi also managed to make a comeback of sorts in one of Dutt's films, itself. As we all know, the film was Munnabhai M.B.B.S,. Probably Arshad's is one of the most successful comebacks of the recent past. His character of Circuit fetched him many a meaty roles in memorable films like Salaam Namaste and Sehar. That apart, he has a fantastic line-up of films like Anthony Kaun Hai, Golmaal, Kabul Express and Munnabhai 2nd Innings. Munnabhai M.B.B.S was also responsible for giving a push to the career of Boman Irani. And how! Having dabbled with theatre and smaller movies in the past, it was this movie which made people sit up and take notice of him.

Nana Patekar, known for his livewire performances was going through a major lull in the late nineties. He went overboard and was also occasionally irritating in Yeshwant, Wajood, Kohraam, Tarkieb, Vadh. And that was till Ram Gopal Varma's Bhoot came along. His performance in a minuscule bit was appreciated to such a great extent that he graduated to extremely consequential roles in Ab Tak Chhappan, Apaharan, Bluffmaster and Taxi 9211.

No one would have thought that after a career graph which included movies like Style, Excuse Me and Kahan Ho Tum, Sharman Joshi would make it to the A -league. Being a big banner film, Shaadi No.1 had the potential to salvage his career. Sadly, it didn't. But what finally did was the first hit of 2006, Rang De Basanti.

Even in the coming year, we will see a lot of stars banking on one particular film to do it for them. Mani Ratnam's Guru is being touted as the 'comeback' vehicle for Mithun Chakravarthy. We just hope it doesn't turn out to be like his so called comebacks in films like Elaan or Chingaari. Similarly, Govinda hopes to pick up the pieces of what's remaining of his career with the forthcoming Partner, Bhagam Bhag and Salaam-e-Ishq. Of late the actor has been everyone's favorite punching bag, what with his political and film career falling flat. The actor has pulled up his socks and attempted to mend his earlier ways, after this low phase in his life. These are the few lucky ones to whom destiny has been kind enough, to give another opportunity. It's all about that last chance and one that they're willing to take. 

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