Bollywood, just like Hollywood, has had a considerable level of influence abroad due to its unique cultural appeal. Ranging from dance moves to the style of the clothing and even the cinematography, Bollywood has actually influenced both Hollywood and American society in a way that is both subtle and yet incredibly obvious if you know where to look.
Influence of Bollywood on Films and Television Shows
One distinctive aspect of Bollywood culture is the elaborate song and dance numbers that permeate its various films and TV shows. This was a unique cultural manifestation, which came about due to the theatrical and cultural connection to dance so popular in Indian culture. Over time, the theatrical nature of Bollywood continued to improve based on changes to local film technology and the use of better film formats to the extent that choreographed performances truly became wonders to behold.
What is interesting though is how Bollywood influenced films and television shows in the U.S. Based on the views of the Deccan Herald, it was seen that aspects of Bollywood helped to influence the creation of music, choreography and various new cinematic methods in Hollywood. This can be seen in shows like “High School: The Musical”, the film version of Les Miserables and other similar films and TV shows that include sudden song and dance numbers with considerable dance choreography.
Impact on Dance and Exercise
Aside from Hollywood, Bollywood has influenced dance and exercise in the U.S. Bollywood-themed workouts have begin popping up, for example Bombay Jam and its various Bollywood dance workout DVDs. As mentioned earlier, dance is an integral aspect of Indian culture that manifests itself through the film and shows of Bollywood; however, one manifestation of this has come in the form of adapting these song and dance routines into something that can be considered as a form of dance exercise. Known as “dance fitness” this craze has swept across the U.S. due to its dynamism and overall fun method of getting people to exercise their calories away while having nothing but fun. It combines several classical Indian dance moves with a faster rhythm and a focus towards increased physical activity. This is a very strange manifestation of Indian culture, yet it is one that shows considerable promise for increased popularity given the amount of attention it has been begun garnering.
Clothes and Fashions in Movies
While the influence of Bollywood on films and exercise is undeniable, Indiatimes explains that another interesting manifestation of this can be seen in the development of new clothes and fashions that have a distinct Bollywood Flair to them. From films like Jupiter Rising to the Star Wars prequels, there were definitely obvious aspects of Bollywood’s cultural influence. This can be seen in the use of saris and other distinctly Indian cultural artifacts in the various costumes that were created by for the film. Aside from this, notable manifestations of Bollywood fashion can be seen in present day fashion trends. The elaborate earrings created by top brands have a distinctly Bollywood feel to them and have gained popularity despite the fact that some of them are quite large!
Lovetoknow states that the most unique manifestation of Bollywood’s cultural influence can be seen in present day video game development and how several of the latest games today have specific aspects of Bollywood in them. For instance, the game Mass Effect, which is considered as one of the best games ever made, has a character called Tali’Zora in it. From the appearance of her clothes, to the way in which she speaks, everything about her has obviously been deeply influenced by Bollywood culture. This is especially true when examining the case of the game Asura’s Wrath, which takes parts of Indian mythology and combines it with a choreographed cinematic story method that hints at Bollywood’s influence in its creation.
What does this all mean?
Going over the data that has been presented, it can be seen that Bollywood has created a large amount of subtle influence in many aspects of American culture without people realizing it. It is possible that given a few more decades, there could be an increase in the level of influence to the extent that wearing Bollywood based fashions or even having more aspects of Bollywood making it into films will become a commonplace aspect in the U.S.
Overall, what this article shows it that cultural influences can come from places that you wouldn’t otherwise expect them to come from. New, but subtle cultural influences help to make present day American culture that much better.