During the recent Bigil audio launch, actor Vijay took the platform to address the enduring controversy of Subhasri’s recent death caused due to a banner. This is not the first time he has done this: during Sarkar audio launch too he delivered a similar kind of speech.
With most actors using entertainment platforms to deliver their political message, we ask if stars are exploiting their huge fan bases to drive their political agenda.
Rajinikanth, on the other hand, used to make his speeches political during audio launch gatherings. Addressing the fans with a ‘kutti kadhai’ and speaking about current political issues was initiated by the superstar himself. Actor Vijay, who portrayed himself as a big Rajinikanth fan, imitated his style in the beginning of his career.
The stars, including Kamal and Suriya, are also very vocal about social issues and make comments on the government. This has become a new style with them and maybe a strategy to capture the audience or to sustain the limelight.
After the political plunge, Ulaganayagan Kamal Hassan utilised the Bigg Boss platform to acquaint the audience with his ideologies. Kamal believes that the show will help him reach his goal of a political career.
In recent times, actor Suriya also spoke about education policy but during Kaapaan audio launch he said this was not the place to speak about politics and stuck to his movie promotion.
Although most of the public supported the speech of Thalapathy Vijay, some also criticised him for using the stage for his personal political aspirations and questioned him as to why he spoke about the Subhasri incident after a week. Some believed that this was a way to create a sensation at his audio launch and help in his movie’s promotion, however many people also lauded him for it.
Budding actors are voicing their opinion at movie / audio launch platforms to promote themselves and make this a selling point for their movie by speaking on the social and political issues in our state.
"Kollywood has always played a significant role in Dravidian politics but of late we see many big stars attempting to establish their political views on every entertainment stage. Actors suddenly want to tap the MGR and Jayalalitha in them but what they will never understand is that they will never earn the reverence that those two legends enjoyed," says Leon Stephen, a HR professional.
Acting is a profession meant to entertain and amuse the audience. But all of a sudden, it has become preachy which makes everyone wonder if actors need to double up as watchdogs for the thoughts, action and deeds of the people in the society.
"As a socially responsible person, I feel politics is a social service whereas acting is a profession. To be a good politician, one must take it up as a social service for the people and society. To be a good actor, one must amuse and entertain the crowds. Confusing both the professions simply creates a chaos," says Naresh Balachander an ardent follower of cinema.