Katrina’s success story should be included in Ripley’s Believe It Or Not for it is nothing short of unbelievable. Let’s take a quick flashback – a girl from nowhere lands in the big bad world of Bollywood. Without any knowledge of the culture or language and no contacts, she somehow starts her career with a cheesy film Boom and later Partner, which was (despite being quite bad) a hit! The movies then led to a few modelling offers and she caught the attention of the country’s biggest star. One thing led to another and after seven years of toil and hard work and a fair bit of luck, she now reigns supreme as one of Bollywood’s highest paid and most successful actresses. This week she sits on the cusp of yet another mammoth hit. Let’s face it, Ek Tha Tiger, regardless of its content, will see a record-breaking opening catapulting Kat to another league altogether. Of course competition is heating up with Kareena’s Heroine on the horizon, Deepika basking in her Cocktail glory and Priyanka, Vidya etc closing in with their respective films. But in terms of sheer box office appeal (which is all what matters), no one can touch Katrina at the moment. The big question is how does she manage the impossible – getting ALL the good roles, with ALL the top banners, co-starring with ALL the big heroes and maintaining a perfect image! Masala! analyses the reasons why Kat is the woman with the Midas touch.
If first impressions are the best, Kat certainly made the right one when she landed in India from London. Her delicate beauty made masses, critics and filmmakers gape in awe. Her angelic face was what Bollywood – an industry obsessed with fair, sweet, innocent looks that defined the Hindi film heroine prototype – needed. So what if it was a tad expressionless in front of the camera?
Salman’s benevolent touch has changed many a struggler’s fortunes but none so much as Katrina. She started off as mere eye candy in some of his films (Partner, Yuvraj) but Sallu’s clout was enough to get her more movies. However, then on, she has always been on her own. Her biggest achievement lies in the way she balanced her personal and professional equations with the mercurial Khan. Despite avoiding marriage with him and later splitting with him, she is in his good books. Her attraction to Ranbir Kapoor allegedly proved to be the final nail in the coffin but Salman doesn’t hold a grudge against her. Just compare that with the issues he has with a certain Aishwarya Rai.
After Salman, if there is any man who Katrina owes her standing to, it’s Aditya Chopra. It was his New York which proved that she could flex her facial muscles if directed well. While Yash Raj, is known to pamper their stars, it has reserved special treatment for Katrina. Her three film coup with SRK, Salman and Aamir needs no elaboration. If you thought Ek Tha Tiger would do wonders, wait for the Yash Chopra directed SRK venture and the biggest of them all – Dhoom 3. The reclusive Aditya Chopra is a tough man to please and Kat has indeed worked her magic on him.
HER PICTURE-PERFECT PROFESSIONAL IMAGE
Come what may, Katrina doesn’t get flustered. She is politically correct to the T and if that makes her a boring interviewee, she couldn’t care less. Her hard work and professionalism makes up for her obvious lack of acting talent and linguistic skills. Most of her films have seen her play an NRI or a super glamourous girl – in fact, filmmakers are known to tweak her characters to suit her (lack of linguistic) abilities! It’s all because she has the title of a ‘lucky mascot’ – something that works very well in superstitious Bollywood. She doesn’t say one word more than she should, doesn’t do controversial things to remain in the news and ensures no personal low comes in the way of her professionalism. The no-nonsense, all work and no play approach has helped her to be taken seriously as an actress.