Sridevi’s death exposes the reality of a celebrity-obsessed culture

Sridevi’s death exposes the reality of a celebrity-obsessed culture

The question is whether her slender frame could take the collective weight of a nation’s impossibly high expectations

It is mighty distasteful to transform Indian icon Sridevi’s sudden death in Dubai due to accidental drowning into a grim reminder about life-lessons and priorities. But there’s no ignoring the macabre trail that this firebrand performer’s death has left behind.

While we are not here to judge, the grim circumstances leading to her death caused by accidental drowning in a bathtub makes us evaluate the brutal world of show-business, particularly Bollywood. Did our impossible standards of beauty coupled with Sridevi’s alleged pursuit of age-defying perfection break her ultimately?

What matters is not whether the revered Indian icon had traces of alcohol in her system or not. What matters is not whether the 54-year-old movie star, with more than 300 Indian films to her credit, was a closet cosmetic surgery fan. What should ideally matter is whether we cultivated a culture of acceptance around stardom. Just like how Hollywood celebrities do not shy away from exhibiting weaknesses such as their multiple addictions, will Bollywood, that boasts of flashy musicals, ever tolerate an idol who could possibly have feet of clay?

While everyone lapped up her flawless, age-defying persona, did anyone stop to think about what it cost her to maintain that sparkling persona? Her every move was dissected to the bone, but the big question is whether her slender frame could take the collective weight of a nation’s impossibly high standards when it comes to the show biz.

As Sridevi’s family gets a semblance of closure with her mortal remains leaving the UAE, here’s hoping that the song-laden world of Bollywood sings a different tune. May that tune be all about body positivity and being flawed — but fabulous.

-Courtesy: Gulf News

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