Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Cracking the Code – My Journey to Bollywood by Ayushmann Khurrana and Tahira Kashyap/ Rupa Publications

Reviews, Vol. I, Issue III

In a very less span of time, an emerging talent of the Indian Film Industry, Ayushmann Khuranna has made his presence felt quite significantly. He is an actor, singer, television anchor, a son, husband, a father, a good human being and many more things in a single package, including the brand new avatar of a writer as well.

In his recently published book Cracking the Code – My Journey to Bollywood (Rupa Publications) Ayushmann has laid bare the utmost personal account of the struggle he went through in his life, in order to make his presence felt, until he cracked the codes of success in Bollywood. His journey is not yet done; he claims this as just a beginning, which it is, indeed.   

In the very beginning of this book, he declares,

“Do you want to be rich? Do you want to be famous? Do you want to be successful? If the answer is yes, then quit reading the book right away. But if you are a lazy, easily bored or have some time to kill, read on…”

He says it wrong. This book is much more than what the author has said in the very first lines. There is a possibility that the readers may take this book as a manual of becoming or making of a star, which it is, indeed, but there is much more in the bag. This book is firstly and essentially focused about the making of a good human being and later on about a successful star, (which Ayushmann keeps claiming, he is not).

Ayushmann has drafted his amusing journey from the beginning of his early childhood, to his first ‘casual fame’ through channel (V)’s show, Popstars, leading towards his experiences as a Roadie, then his struggle, love and fame with films like Vicky Donor, Bewakoofiyan, Nautanki Sala  until his much awaited upcoming movie, Hawaizada.  

Ayushmann’s struggle is different from the numerous dreamers who go to Mumbai in order to be lost. It is so, because he believes in self-confidence, rather than overconfidence, which eats up dreams and lives as well.   

Karan Johar speculates the essence of this book really well. In his words, this book is “[O]ne of the most personal accounts of how an insider not only managed to get the proverbial foot in the door, but also opened the doors and hearts of an industry that doesn’t usually welcome unknown last names… [A] genuinely compelling read.”

The book may be read in a single sitting, because the experiences, passions, humility and insightfulness of Khurrana keeps you chained.

Book Blurb:
So you love the spotlight and drama of Bollywood, and want to make it your life. But what is the right time to become a professional actor? What sort of hindrances are you likely to face as you make your way through the film and television industry? Where will this road take you? And, most importantly, how do you make it happen?

In Cracking the Code, Ayushmann Khurrana—actor, singer and television personality—tries to answer these questions and outlines a step-by-step guide to making it big in tinsel town, drawing on his personal experiences as a rising star in Bollywood. Supported by anecdotes from his own life—his transition from a reality TV star to a distinctive voice on Big FM; from getting a break in soap operas to becoming the highest-paid host of reality shows on television; from dealing with failed auditions to finally landing the coveted lead role in hit film Vicky Donor; and struggling to juggle his new-found success with his family life—Ayushmann identifies and shares the patterns he has noticed on the road to becoming a successful movie star.

Honest, witty and insightful, Cracking the Code offers a rare insider’s look into the film industry as it stands today, and tries to simplify the process of getting a break in Bollywood. 

Ayushmann Khurrana is an award-winning Indian film actor, singer and television anchor whose debut film, Vicky Donor, was critically acclaimed and a huge commercial success. Tahira Kashyap is a professor of mass communication and journalism in Mumbai and the author of two books. She also writes and directs plays in Chandigarh, her hometown.

Reviewed by Varsha Singh 
Managing Editor | Reviews