Are you known to turn up your nose at Bollywood award functions and wake up at an ungodly hour to religiously watch The Oscars every year? Come 2019 and you may not be in a position to be a cinema snob. The Oscars have just announced a new category for outstanding achievement in popular film. Sound familiar? It's a move Bollywood award shows have mastered.
The Indian film industry is a bit like one large joint-family. You can't afford to piss people off because you have to work with them at some point. To appease everyone (and their egos), award shows routinely feature categories that go beyond the usual best actor, film, director, etc. We're talking Superstar of Tomorrow, Glamourous Star Award, Breakthrough Performance, Extraordinary Impact and Exciting New Face. And no, these are real categories — we swear we didn't make them up. These elaborate categories ensure everybody — from newbies to veterans - goes home happy, with a gleaming trophy in hand. And hey, even if you haven't acted in a film, you could still go home with a style icon award or some such.
The Academy seems to be following suit by trying to appease the masses. The new Oscar category is an attempt to drive audience interest and boost ratings. This year's Oscars witnessed the lowest US viewership in history. The next Oscar event will also be wrapped up in three hours, as opposed to last year's event, which ran to just under four hours. Thanks to the new category, box-office hits such as Black Panther and Mama Mia: Here We Go Again now stand a chance to win the prestigious trophy.