For a Handful of Stardust

Tollywood, the Telugu-language film industry based in Hyderabad in southern India, produced more movies than Bollywood in 2013-14. Every year, thousands of aspiring actors and technicians move to the Krishna Nagar and Indira Nagar neighbourhoods in the city,  hoping to make it big in the film industry.

Many of them come from rustic towns and villages and have no real acting experience or the much needed ‘background and maintenance’ – industry-speak for caste, money, connections and generally being slick and smart. Clueless about how to get cracking, many actors begin as junior artistes (extras) and with some luck and effort,  make it as members of the supporting cast or lead actors in C and B-grade movies.