Why Bollywood Ringtones Are The "In" Thing
By Philip Nicosia
The pull of popular culture is what is driving the current worldwide popularity
of mobile phones. Owning a cool phone is considered the "in thing" and makes
people feel that they "belong". Popular culture is also the reason for the
current popularity of certain fringe cultural outlets like world cinema or world
music. It is not surprising that these two worlds - phones and world cinema -
would meet and come up with a surprisingly new and fresh fad. Bollywood
ringtones on your mobile phone.
For those who are as yet unfamiliar with the term, Bollywood is a term that has
been given to the Hindi-language film industry in India. The term "Bollywood" is
a mix of the names "Bombay" (which is the old name of Mumbai) and "Hollywood"
the acknowledged center of the American film industry. The Indian film industry
is one of the most robust in the world. It is considered as one of the most
prolific in terms of the number of films released each year. It is also the
number one when it comes to the total number of ticket sales.
The most unique (or most peculiar, depending on your personal taste) feature of
Bollywood movies are the musical numbers incorporated into almost all movie
offerings. This does not necessarily mean that Bollywood movies are all
musicals. It is just that by tradition, a movie is not considered complete
without a song and dance number. And unlike the typical musical, these numbers
contain plot points and action that are not found in US-style musical. For most
Indian moviegoers a movie that does not contain at least one song and dance
number is considered incomplete and not worth the price of the ticket.
Traditional Indian dance and music forms heavily influence these song and dance
numbers. Even pop or modern songs and dances are injected with distinctively
Indian elements that make them quite unique.
It is these unique Bollywood songs (also known as filmi music) that are gaining
a renewed popularity as ringtones for mobile phones. There may be two major
reasons for the growing popularity of Bollywood ringtones. First, Indian cinema
is gaining a new level of international popularity in other countries. Film
lovers are discovering that Bollywood films have merits that makes them so
compelling to watch. Lovers of kitsch, on the other hand, find Bollywood movies
fantastical enough that it captures their attention.
The second reason for the popularity may also be attributable to it being such a
peculiar yet cheeky way of having a ringtone. A bollywood ringtone on a person's
phone may paint a picture of that person as a lover of film and / or a person
who has a sense of humor and loves to bring something unusual to his phone.
Customizing your mobile phone's ringtone with a Bollywood ringtone shows that
you are a person that is both a lover of culture but not afraid to poke a little
fun at yourself. These qualities may be the reason that Bollywood ringtones are
becoming such a popular choice among people.