Sidharth Malhotra and Parineeti Chopra’s Jabariya Jodi: Are they Terribly Miscast?

Sidharth Malhotra and Parineeti Chopra’s Jabariya Jodi: Are they Terribly Miscast?

Sidharth Malhotra and Parineeti Chopra’s Jabariya Jodi’s trailer was released yesterday. But it looks like one more case of bad casting
Sidharth Malhotra and Parineeti Chopra’s Jabariya Jodi: Are they Terribly Miscast?

There is this fierce debate in the West that only  gay actors should play gay characters  in  films. But if you see Josh O’Connor  in  the masterpiece  God’s Own Country  or  the very heterosexual Armie Hammer in Call Me By Your Name, you will see that  they are pitch-perfect. They convince you that no matter what  the role, any actor  can do it. As  long as he can act.

After seeing  the  just-out trailer  of  Jabariya Jodi, I am not so convinced.  In fact, let me go further. I am coerced into believing that actors must  know  the cultural physical and vernacular orientation  that  they assume on screen. Recently I  heard  Sunny Leone was  playing a Bihari in  a movie. That could be someone’s idea  of a joke. I hope it is. No one in their right  mind would even dream of doing this. It’s like making Bade Ghulam Ali Khan sing ‘Staying Alive’  .

I thought  I had seen  the worst miscasting ever in Bharat where Katrina Kaif played a civil servant  in the 1940s and it made me think uncivil  thoughts. But now  here comes the male version of Katrina Kaif in Jabariya Jodi.

Siddhrath Malhotra,  who defines urban cool, is  cast as a Bihari groom kidnapper. Let me explain. In a section of North India, marriageable men were kidnapped at  gunpoint and  forced to marry  girls whose parents couldn’t afford a dowry. This  practice is  now defunct in Bihar. But the exploitative hawk eyes  of Bollywood  fell on this (outdated) practice and we have Jabariya Jodi.

We have Malhotra in the trailer prancing around  in colourful kurtas, speaking loudly in a ‘Bihari’ accent and yes, kidnapping grooms  for  a  price. It’s all supposed to be  uncontrollably funny.  But  actually looks as  hoax as a staged  performance  of  the Ramayana at the Paris Fashion week with actors in fancy dress oozing ersatz ethnicity.

After watching the  trailer  two thoughts  crossed my mind. That Siddharth Malhotra’s ‘Bihari’ accent is better than Hrithik Roshan’s in Super  30. And that Bihar is actually not the place I grew up in. I have all these years been living in a parallel reality of ‘Bihar’

Watch the trailer of Jabariya Jodi here:

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The makers of Jabariya Jodi know better. Welcome to Bihar . Please keep your safety belts on. Bumpy ride ahead.

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