I apologize for having been away for a while. It’s DIWALI, y’see; and I’m home for vacations. #Maa-ka-pyaar #Ghar-ka-khaana #Gala-time and the cosmic hashtags that ensue 😀
I just got back home after having watched HAIDER. Good Lord, wasn’t it a commendable film! Vishal Bharadwaj has made a monumental effort in blending HAMLET with the insurgency in Kashmir. It is totally worth giving it the title of “Indian Hamlet” 🙂 I lov-ed it (Shraddha Kapoor Style 😀 ) !
As I exited the theatre, I was contemplating on how Shahid has evolved with every film that he has done over the years. From his first in Ishq Vishk to Jab We Met and Haider – he has made headway in breaking all the barriers of critical acclaim. I was sharing this with my US Return cousin, and the following conversation happened –
SHE: “There are so many amazing people like this. Amitabh Bachchan, Sharukh Khan..and many more!”
ME: “I know! I feel so wasted. They are such inspirational personas. I wish to be as successful as them someday.”
SHE: “Ohhh meri HAIDERni, let’s go have icecream. The film tickled your thinking bone, eh?” and HAHAHAHA, she laughed away.
Sitting in the CREAMSTONE icecream parlour, my mind was still lost in thought. Why just Shahid? Surely, there are more people who struggled their way up the success ladder. The world ought to know, I figured.
And so tadahhhhh!
Today, I’m going to talk about 20 Hollywood and Bollywood Celebrities who weren’t born with a silver spoon in their mouths, and proved the age-old adage that says, “It’s not where you start, but where you finish that counts” –
(P.S, I’m excluding Amitabh Bachchan and Sharukh Khan here, because they are already known for their struggles in life…thanks to KOFFEE WITH KARAN for making Bollywood so transparent 😛 – haha)
1. RAJNIKANTH, Coolie and Bus Conductor
Originally named SHIVAJI RAO GAEKWAD, this Bangalorian “Thalaivar” initially worked as a ‘coolie’. He eventually took up the job of a ‘bus conductor’ to earn a living. After his debut film, Apoorva Raagangal, he made it big; and the rest is history. 🙂
No wonder he donates half his wealth to charity – #respect !
2. JOHNNY DEPP, Telemarketer
Ohh yes, baby! 😀 Our Pirate did a variety of jobs before his wife introduced him to Nicholas Cage, who gave him a breakthrough in the cinema field. He played the guitar in various garage bands, and was also a telemarketer for pens. Hahaha!
No wonder he aces all the weird roles he takes up. 😛
3. BOMAN IRANI, Waiter and Room Service Attendant
The man who stole our hearts with his character ‘Viru Sahastrabudhhe’ in 3 Idiots worked as a waiter and room service attendant in Mumbai’s Taj Palace Hotel. He also assisted his mother in managing their ancestral bakery. He then took to photography and theatre before ‘MunnaBhai MBBS’ came his way and made him a big name in Bollywood.
4. TOM CRUISE, Hotel Bellhop
Born ‘Thomas Cruise Mapother IV’, this handsome ‘Knight’ helped carry luggage in hotels as a Bellhop. Eventually, he took to scientology and spawned Suri.
5. AKSHAY KUMAR, Waiter – Dishwasher and Chef
Our very own ‘Khiladi’ worked as a waiter and dishwasher at a restaurant in Bangkok. He, then, graduated to be a chef with a monthly salary of a meagre Rs.1500. He would sleep on the Kitchen Floor.
That’s probably why he is Bollywood’s most dedicated and focussed actor, and is noted for his daredevilry. Bangkok roots, y’know! 😀
6. MEGAN FOX, Banana Mascot
This Hollywood siren used to wear a banana costume to attract customers to a smoothie shop in Florida. Till date, she admits that it was the only REAL job she had.
7. SMRITI IRANI, Cleaner at McDonald’s
This incumbent Indian Minister of Human Resource and Development left Delhi for Mumbai to enter the ‘Femina Miss India 1997’ contest. When she failed to receive the crown, she faced a financial crisis and took to scrubbing floors at McDonald’s. Soon, she was approached to play the character of ‘Tulsi’, and there was no looking back.
8. BRAD PITT, Limo Driver and Chicken Mascot
‘Mr. Smith’ was a limo driver for strippers (Lucky man, eh!) and an employee at El Pollo Loco (Chicken Mascot, he was – haha) where he had to handout flyers and attract customers to the store.
9. SYLVESTER STALLONE, Lion Cage Cleaner
ROCKY was indeed a far-sighted dream for him when he cleaned lion cages at the Central Park Zoo in New York. 😀 Hahaha!
10. NAWAZUDDIN SIDDIQUI, Farmer & Chemist and Watchman
The bad guy in Salman Khan’s KICK switched professions from a farmer and a chemist at a petrochemical factory to a watchman for earning his basic income for almost one and a half years. Then came his debut in Aamir Khan’s Sarfarosh, and he rose to fame.
11. HUGH JACKMAN, Clown
Isn’t it hard to digest that WOLVERINE was once a CLOWN? No, I’m not cussing. He was ‘actually’ COCO THE CLOWN. At about 50$ per show, he entertained kids at birthday parties. 😀
12. OPRAH WINFREY, Beauty Pageant Winner (Rape Victim who transcended barriers and showed the world she’s no less)
Now, this is one woman who put her foot down and said, “This is the way to do it, baby”. What a lady!
She spent her former years with her grandmother, wearing clothes out of Potato Sacks; ran away from home at the age of 13 after being molested by two family members and a family friend. She witnessed the death of her newborn child at 14.
It wasn’t until she started living with her mom who sent her to stay with her father, that she got a full scholarship to college, won a beauty pageant – where she was discovered by a radio station, and then trod the road of success to earn herself a position worth 2.7 billion dollars.
13. RAKEYSH OMPRAKASH MEHRA, Vacuum Cleaner Salesman
The National Award filmaker (of renowned films like Rang De Basanti and Bhaag Milkha Bhaag) who is also an SRCC Alumnus, served tea on the film sets. Preceding that, he worked as a vacuum cleaner salesman.
14. SEAN CONNERY, Milkman
Probably best known for potraying the legendary character of JAMES BOND seven times, Connery worked as a milkman in Native Scotland at an age of 14, making 21 shillings a week.
Later, he took up a potpourri of jobs including that of a lifeguard, ditch digger and artist’s model. After a stint in the Royal Navy, he also competed in the Mr.Universe pageant, where he stood third in the Tall Man’s division.
15. PATRICK DEMPSEY, Juggler
Ohh yes, honey – he’s the one who stole my heart with ‘Enchanted’ 😀 – hahaha!
On a serious note, this ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ (Take my word for it – I LOVE this show <3) star juggled for money. He competed in the International Juggers’ Association when he was 15, and came in second.
Look at him, aren’t you melting? 😀
Ohhh no no no no! Picture abhi baaki hain, mere dost 😀 (The show is yet to end)
Considering SHAHID KAPOOR’s laudable performance in Haider, I thought you people would like to know the fact that he had struggled a lot to carve himself a niche as an actor, despite being the noted Pankaj Kapoor’s son.
To those of you who never noticed or knew, you’ll spot him amongst the many background dancers in the prominent song “Kahi Aag Lage Lag Jawe” in Subhash Ghai’s ‘Taal’ (you may want to know that he was a student at Shiamak Davar’s Institute of Performing Arts – and that’s why this happened 😉 )
Those of you who are feeling motivated, hit the bed – you’ll get normal when you wake up from your nap!
Those of you who aren’t – GOOD JOB, MATE! Way to go! 😛
Before I leave, here’s one line from the film HAIDER, that struck a chord –
“Dil ki agar sunu toh tu hai…
Dimag ki sunu toh tu hai nahi.
Jaan lun ki Jaan dun?
Main rahoon ki main nahi? “
“If I listen to my heart, you’re here.
If I listen to my head, you’re gone.
Should I take someone’s life or give mine instead?
Should I live or cease to exist? “)