Priyanka Chopra’s presence at recently conducted Oscars 2017 was hardly of any significance. She might have walked on the red carpet, blew a few flying kisses, gossiped with Dwayne Johnson and attended an after-party bash. However, in a holistic view, Priyanka was one of the many actors to have attended Oscars. She was present at the Oscars in the capacity of a well-known face rather than as an artist.
She was not presenting awards this time ( last year she presented awards at Oscars). Unlike Dev Patel, she didn’t have any nomination in any category. Yet, when it came to Oscar buzz in India, Priyanka was everywhere ( like always). The actor was all over the social media with her an eager smile and demeanour.
Watch | Oscars 2017 Pay Tribute To Om Puri
Even as media here was busy detailing Priyanka’s every small act on the red carpet, one artist was getting honoured at one of the most high-profile celebrated stages in the world. Om Puri who had been working silently in Hollywood for past 25 years was recognised by the West for his contribution to world cinema. The actor has appeared in many British and Hollywood films like Ghost and Darkness. He gained worldwide fame with a small role in Gandhi. When the actor died recently, foreign media including BBC and The Guardian wrote obituaries in the memory of the actor.
The actor was rightfully honoured at the 89th Academy Awards ceremony in the ‘In Memoriam’ montage.
Let’s understand one thing, it’s not every day that an Indian artist is mentioned at the world stage for his contribution to cinema. The essence of Oscars can’t be denied ( for those who think that as Indians – we shouldn’t give much importance to Oscars). The dichotomy between Priyanka and Om Puri’s presence at Oscars is quite stark. While one was celebrated for making a red carpet appearance, the other is ignored for his artistic achievements.
Why did we fail to recognise Om Puri’s mention at Oscars? The concept of achievement has diluted over years. As an audience one doesn’t have a problem with Priyanka’s ability to be everywhere and making headlines with an unparalleled pace, but it also becomes significant to ask- what was her contribution as an artist at Oscars? None. As blunt as it may sound, but it’s true.
On the other hand, Om Puri was representing India. For West, he was an artist and they didn’t forget ( unlike Bollywood awards) to recognise his talent and contribution. This is not to say that Priyanka’s achievements are any less. However, Oscars wasn’t celebrating Priyanka’s achievements on February 26. It’s as simple as that.
For one day, we could have kept Priyanka in the background and should have let Om Puri’s sheer talent as an artist take the centre stage ( just as Oscars rightfully did).