An actor becomes a star not because of talent alone. It has to do with his style, his personality, his hairstyle! Yes it’s true.
Right from Shammi Kapoor, Dev Anand, Dilip Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan, Jeetendra, Mithun to Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Akshay Kumar – people copied hairstyles the most. There was a saying that if your picture is put up on the wall of a local barbershop then it means you’re a star. And when these stars had to change their look for a particular film they would wear wigs, beards and moustaches. Not grow them! Wig makers were a very happy lot. Today most actors grow or cut their hair for a film. Hence in every film they look different. Most of the times their look is copied from an international fashion magazine or a film. This makes it very confusing for a fan to copy their hairstyle as their hairstyle is copied! Plus it isn’t their hairstyle; it’s just a temporary look for a film which many don’t remember in the first place! Believe it or not, but such small things also hamper them from becoming all India stars. Popularity and stardom are two separate things. Most of them are working because they are popular. But most of their films aren’t working because they aren’t stars!
Amitabh cut dena…Mithunwala hairstyle karna…Shahrukh ke jaise baal kar do…these and many more star hairstyles were the requests to local barbers, who would proudly display stars pictures in their shops. Most still do. Unfortunately, many stars of the news generation haven’t made it to their walls. Also because no customer requests for their hairstyles anymore. Why?
To be a star of course one needs hit films, but more importantly fans should be able to mimic his mannerisms, dancing styles, dialogue and of course his hairstyle; it may sound a little passé but it is true…wigmakers ke dushman bahut rarely stars bante hain.
(This column first appeared in the print edition of Super Cinema dated 20th Oct 2017)