Bollywood unites India: Kabir Bedi

By Gurmukh Singh

Toronto, June 24 (IANS) Veteran actor Kabir Bedi rates Ranbir Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor as the two best young actors in Bollywood today.

"But frankly there is dearth of young bright talented actors coming through. That's what Bollywood lacks today,'' feels Bedi who is one of the few Indian actors to make it to Hollywood.

"The problem could be also due to the fact that older actors keep reinventing themselves. Salman Khan is still there, Shah Rukh Khan is still ruling there. Akshay Kumar is there,'' Bedi told IANS here.

"But Ranbir and Shahid are the two most promising new-generation actors, and I want to see more young actors in Bollywood,'' he said.

However, he feels there is no death of young actresses.

"Bollywood has seen no such problem when it comes to new actresses. We have so many of them. We have just seen Anuskha Sharma come from nowhere. We have Deepita Padukone who too came from nowhere. We have Priyanka Chopra who has been on the scene for about 10 years now. She also came from nowhere. So I think are some very good young actresses.''

Asked what he thought of Deepa Mehta's description of Bollywood as "Indian kitsch'' and not true representative of Indian culture, he said, "Deepa is a great filmmaker of finer sensibilities. These may be her elitist views, but Bollywood does reflect India and its Indian culture. That it is has a huge audience worldwide shows that it reflects Indian culture.''

Later, speaking a discussion on 'Hollywood, Bollywood and Beyond,'' Bedi said Bollywood is a potent symbol of India.

He said though has not worked much in Bollywood, he has no hesitation calling himself a Bollywood actor.

"Bollywood is the most potent symbol of India. It has promoted (communal) unity. It has promoted Hindi as India's national language. Bollywood unites India,'' he said.

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