New Delhi: We are a bunch of funny people. A country which is plagued by problems like poverty, red tapism and corruption revels when two middle aged film actors hug and greet each other at an Iftar party on the behest of an MLA, who happens to be the host of the party. The host makes the two 'reluctant' stars pose for the camera and while the actors smile politely for the lenses, the MLA stands in the middle, beaming with pride- as if he has united the leaders of two warring countries.
But has the spat really come to an end? If one looks closely at the pictures, both Salman Khan and Shah Rukh Khan seem to be just obliging their host. The two actors, who have been avoiding each other for five years at every possible event in town, perhaps had no inkling about each others arrival at the Sunday event. Because both landed up at the party around the same time and Baba Siddiquie suggested that they greet each other. Those present there, state that Salman walked up to where SRK was seated, shook his hand, wished him and gave him a hug while Siddiquie beamed like a proud parent throughout.
While the 'hug' became viral on social networking sites, members of the media were quick to announce that the warring Khans had ended their much public spat. Interestingly, there was no statement from either of the actors post the encounter but the country reveled over the fact that 'Karan-Arjun' had finally buried their past differences.
So what exactly had happened five years back? The two actors had a heated argument at Katrina Kaif's birthday party when SRK made some unparliamentary comments about Salman's ex girlfriend Aishwarya Rai after Salman mocked at some of SRK's TV shows. The two extremely 'mature' adults- one with kids- almost came to blows that night but friends and SRK's wife Gauri intervened at the right moment and the party came to an abrupt halt.
Now, that was five years back. Post that, Salman's career got a fresh lease of life and he became the undisputed king of Bollywood. SRK started experimenting with filmmaking- some worked, some failed. New, younger stars came into the industry, became stars and people moved on from that ugly spat. Or so we would think.
But the brouhaha over a simple 'hug' which was basically to strengthen an MLA's image got us thinking about one thing. Are we as a country really that free to sit, marvel and gush about two almost 50 year old actors' personal matters? Do we really have that much free time?
As a member of the fraternity which sometimes hypes things to extreme proportions, I'll admit that the news was worth a lead story on our site. And it became the most read story of the night, expectedly so.
Bollywood has never been devoid of off-screen masala. Fights between two contemporary actors isn't new, it has always been there. But times are changing in the film industry. At a time when we have some of the best filmmakers churning out amazing stories for the audiences, isn't it time to just concentrate on good cinema? It has been an amazing week at the theatre with poignant films like 'Ship Of Theseus' getting a hat tip from industry peers and Farhan Akhtar being lauded for his brilliant work in the inspirational 'Bhaag Milkha Bhaag'. So, really who has the free time to sit and analyse that SRK and Salman have finally made peace with each other? Let them be, let us celebrate cinema instead, shall we?