The first edition of The Ghanta Awards for 2011 was held at a small pub in Juhu as a free show with close to 200 people in attendance. The following year, The Ghantas — as the Bollywood mock awards are popularly referred to — grew bigger. A sold-out ticketed event, it was hosted at The Comedy Store. But what truly gave it credibility was Bollywood star Sonam Kapoor, who received the Worst Actress award for her performance in Mausam. Her presence was also indicative of the acceptance among the audience, organisers and their central subject of humour, Bollywood.
“During our first edition, Uday Chopra had tweeted about him winning the Worst Actor award for Pyaar Impossible. It assured us that there is a place for awards like The Ghantas, where mockery wouldn’t be taken as an insult,” says Prashant Rajkhowa, co-founder of the awards along with Karan Anshuman.
Awards that mock what is one of the subjects that Indians are most passionate about — Bollywood — are finding an audience for their tongue-in-cheek humour. Designed to celebrate the worst to have come out of Bollywood in that year, mock awards are growing popular, but the concept is not alien to the Indian audience. The celebrated Golden Raspberry awards or Razzies, started in 1981 to “honour” the worst in Hollywood, enjoys a cult following universally.
This year will witness the launch of the Filmfail awards and The Royal Turds. While The Ghantas are set to grow bigger in their latest edition on February 15 by moving venue to the upscale JW Marriott, with more Bollywood celebrities in attendance, The Filmfail Awards is expecting as guests actor Ayushmann Khurrana and director Rohan Sippy — names one would associate with prominent, mainstream Hindi films. “These awards are blunt, straight forward and irreverent. I have indulged in Bollywood satire in the past when I wasn’t part of the industry. Criticism with a tinge of humour is always welcome,” explains Khurrana.
Karan Talwar, co-founder of The Filmfail awards, explains that it is people’s passion for cinema that makes the format a success . “If you are curious to know who won the best actor, you will probably be more curious about the worst actor,” he says.
The evolving stand-up comedy scene helps too. The All India Bakc****, a popular group of stand-up comics led by Gursimran Khamba and Tanmay Bhat, decided to come up with their version of awards after they saw potential in their Bollywood-centric shows. “Moreover, most of us have written scripts for regular award shows, and previously, The Ghantas,” says Khamba, who has teamed up with other prominent stand-ups, such as Ashish Shakya, Anuvab Pal and Rohan Joshi, to launch The Royal Turds. While Sorabh Pant-led East India Comedy has partnered with The 3rd Annual Ghanta Awards, The Filmfail awards are being written and performed by another group of stand-ups, the Schitzengiggles. A series of comic-acts and musical performances will punctuate the awards night, decided by public online voting.
The Royal Turds would be hosted at the vintage, refurbished Liberty Cinema on February 15, even as The Filmfail awards will take place at the St Andrews Auditorium, Bandra, on February 28. The Ghantas have a multi-year tie-up with the event company, Invision. The Royal Turds are being supported by online music platform nh7.in and will travel to Delhi, Pune and Bangalore. “Such shows have a massive appeal on online forums. The youth are enthusiastic about this,” says Anurag Bedi, Business Head, Zee Cafe, who is a partner for The Filmfail awards.
The Filmfail Awards
Jaanta hai Mera Baap Kaun Hai? Award for star son/daughter/ nephew/niece of the year
Alia Bhatt d/o Mahesh Bhatt – Student Of The Year
Jackie Bhagnani s/o Vashu Bhagnani – Ajab Ghazab Love Varun Dhawan s/o David Dhawan – Student Of The Year
Himeshbhai Memorial Song of The Year
Ishq Wala Love – Student Of The Year
Saans – Jab Tak Hai Jaan
Main Heroine hoon – Heroine
NICE TRY! Award for trying and failing horribly
Sunny Leone keeping her clothes on in Jism 2 n Tusshar Kapoor taking his clothes off in Kya Kool Hain Hum 2
Shirish Kunder attempting a sci-fi in Joker
The Royal Turds
Fresh feces of the year
Collective Turd – Student of the Year
Leander Paes – Rajdhani Express
Diana Penty – Cocktail
Vivek and Mallika –Kismat Love Paisa Dilli n Karishma Kapoor – Dangerous Ishq n Jackie Shroff – Maushi Chi Gaand
Worst minority representation
Ajay Devgn as a Sikh in Son of Sardaar
Boman Irani as a Parsi lingerie salesman in Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi
Jesus in Jab Tak Hai Jaan
The Ghanta Awards
That’s Anything But Sexy
Tusshar Kapoor’s striptease in Kya Super Kool Hai Hum
25-year-old Sonakshi made to dance with a much fitter 39-year-old Malaika in Dabangg 2 n Esha Gupta stripping naked because of ghost cockroaches in Raaz 3D
WTF Was That
Actual aliens showing up in Joker
A pornstar being recruited by the CBI in Jism 2
A love quadrangle with Jesus in Jab Tak Hai Jaan