Whether or not the sleeper movie Slumdog Millionaire had won the Best Picture Oscar, its work would have been done: to shine a global light on a culture whose influence is spreading at disproportionate speed. Even though this is not a Bollywood film in the strict sense of the term (written and directed by Brits), its Dickensian depiction of life in the world's fourth largest metropolis is feeding a cultural frenzy. You can now book a "slumdog millionaire tour" in Mumbai, and Bollywood films are flying off the proverbial shelves. (More than four times as many films are made per year in Mumbai alone than in the entire Hollywood film industry.)
And you ain't seen nothin' yet, say many Bollywood veterans. "It's sad but true that we very often wait for the West to recognize a genius," laments Preity Zinta.
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