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Arjan Bajwa on insider vs outsider debate: Talent comes later; it is all about access in Bollywood

The insiders versus outsiders debate rages on in Bollywood in the aftermath on Sushant Singh Rajput’s death, with many coming forward and slamming the culture of sidelining in the film industry. Admitting that it’s a valid debate, actor Arjan Bajwa — an outsider himself — says at the end of the day, it’s all about access which the star kids have and others don’t.

He explains, “If you’re not from the film industry, how would you know people? How will they know who you are? For somebody like me, who doesn’t come from a film family, access happens when you show your talent repeatedly. For an outsider, who is no one’s son or daughter or nephew or niece, the only way to gain access is to show your work, your merit, that’s when people notice you.”

 

In his case also, the actor shares he had to work extra hard to get his foot in the door and prove himself first by doing advertisements and music videos, before someone decided to give him a film.

“People are talking about how it’s all about talent whether insider or outsider, and that even the star kids have to prove their mettle. But for your talent to come on screen, you need an access. If you’re an outsider, without that access, what’s your talent going to do sitting at home. Talent comes later, it’s all about access in Bollywood,” asserts the 40-year-old.

Bajwa, who has starred in films such as Guru (2007), Fashion (2008), Rustom (2016) and Kabir Singh (2019), says it’s indeed very “difficult” for non-film background people to make a place in Bollywood.

“I didn’t have any Godfather or was not given an easy platform. Whatever I did, was on merit. I’d consider myself fortunate that I got to be a part of big films,” he ends.

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