The sudden and untimely demise of actor Sushant Singh Rajput has sparked the debate over nepotism with many celebrities opening up on how the big and influential families in Bollywood have been propagating it over the years. In the midst of the raging debate, Pooja Bhatt, filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt’s daughter and actress Alia Bhatt’s half-sister, has come up to counter the nepotism allegations aimed at her family. While defending her family, Pooja also cited Kangana Ranaut’s “launch” by Vishesh Films (a film production company owned by Mukesh Bhatt and Mahesh Bhatt) in the movie Gangster.
Post her claims, Kangana Ranaut’s team hit back at Pooja Bhatt in a series of Tweets. They claimed that Pooja’s home production exploits the new talents, who enter the industry with a dream to be launched under big banners, by offering them work without any pay. Alleging that Mahesh Bhatt had once hit Kangana with chappals, Kangana’s team hit back at Pooja Bhatt by saying that even if they launched her it “did not give your father a license to throw chappals at her”.
Dear @PoojaB1972, #AnuragBasu had keen eyes to spot Kangana’s talent, everyone knows Mukesh Bhatt does not like to pay artists, to get talented people for free is a favour many studios do on themselves but that doesn’t give your father a license to throw chappals at her…(1/2) https://t.co/5afdsJJx4F— Team Kangana Ranaut (@KanganaTeam) July 8, 2020
Alleging that Mahesh Bhatt had once written off Kangana by announcing her “tragic end”, Kangana’s team accused the former to be involved in actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death. “Also why was he so invested in Sushant Singh Rajpoot’s and Rhea’s relationship? Why did he announce his end too, some of the questions you must ask him,” further read the Tweet.
…call her mad and humiliate her. He also announced her “tragic end”, Also why was he so invested in Sushant Singh Rajpoot’s and Rhea’s relationship? Why did he announce his end too, some of the questions you must ask him 🙏 (2/2)@PoojaB1972— Team Kangana Ranaut (@KanganaTeam) July 8, 2020
Kangana’s team further wrote that alongside Gangster, Kangana had also auditioned for Pokiri, which went on to become an all-time blockbuster. “So your thinking that because of Gangster she is who she is, is totally not working. Water finds it’s level.”
Pooja Bhatt, who was launched into the film industry with her dad’s production ‘Daddy’ in 1989, had claimed that as a family of filmmakers they have always supported newcomers and outsiders. She tweeted: “Toh yeh ‘Nepotism’ shabd se kissi aur Ko zalil karne ki koshish karo doston. The people who have found their way into the movies through the springboard we provided over the decades know what we stand for. And if they have forgotten, It’s their tragedy. Not ours. Have a great day!”
Toh yeh ‘Nepotism’ shabd se kissi aur Ko zalil karne ki koshish karo doston. The people who have found their way into the movies through the springboard we provided over the decades know what we stand for. And if they have forgotten,It’s their tragedy. Not ours.Have a great day!— Pooja Bhatt (@PoojaB1972) July 8, 2020
There was a time when the Bhatt’s were accused of having something against established actors & made to feel inferior for only working with/launching newcomers & not chasing stars. And now the same people play the nepotism card? Google & tweet guys & won’t even say think & speak.— Pooja Bhatt (@PoojaB1972) July 8, 2020
Pooja concluded by saying that people should not try to humiliate them by using the term “nepotism”.
While Pooja Bhatt has defended the nepotism charges meted out at her family by claiming that her family was once accused of “only working with newcomers and not chasing stars”, her argument somehow does not add up considering the number of people in her own family who have used the “Bhatt” surname to launch themselves in Bollywood. Probably half of those on the long list of her family members, who are today a part of the film fraternity, would not have made it if their last name was anything except ‘Bhatt’.
To begin with, Pooja Bhatt’s grandfather- Nanabhai Bhatt, was a well-known Indian film director and producer of Bollywood and Gujarati cinema. He had made innumerable movies in his career, few being the mythological film Lakshmi Narayan (1951) starring Meena Kumari and Mahipal in the leading role, blockbuster movie Kangan (1959), Baazigar (1959), Lal Qila (1960), etc.
Pooja Bhatt’s father Mahesh Bhatt is an acclaimed producer, director, screenwriter. Mahesh Bhatt is one of the biggest names in the Bollywood industry. In fact, Pooja Bhatt was also launched by her father when she was 17.
Robin Bhatt- A writer and assistant director in Bollywood Robin Bhatt is the half-brother of Mahesh Bhatt. Robin Bhatt who is known for films like for Baazigar (1993), Chennai Express (2013) and Koi… Mil Gaya (2003). Robin Bhatt’s debut film as a writer was Aashiqui, which was produced by Vishesh Films, an film producing company owned by brothers, Mahesh Bhatt and Mukesh Bhatt.
Mukesh Bhatt- He has produced several Bollywood films. He is the younger brother of Mahesh Bhatt, and also the co-owner of the production company Vishesh Films.
Vishesh and Sakhi Bhatt- The son and daughter of Mukesh Bhatt. They both are director and producer respectively.
Rahul Bhatt- Rahul is Pooja Bhatt’s brother. He is an aspiring actor who was also a part of celebrity reality show ‘Bigg Boss season 4’.
Soni Razdan- Mahesh Bhatt’s second wife and Alia Bhatt’s mother. Soni Razdan is an acclaimed actress working for Hindi cinema for over 3 decades.
Alia Bhatt- Is a succussful Bollywood actress who made her Bollywood debut with Karan Johar’s ‘Student Of The Year’. She is Mahesh Bhatt’s daughter with his second wife Soni Razdan.
Dharmesh Darshan- An Indian filmmaker and the nephew of Mahesh Bhatt. He made his directorial debut in the year 1993 with the movie Lootere which was produced by his brother Suneel Darshan.
Mohit Suri- Is a film director, as well as an assistant director and member of the Bhatt family. He is the son of Mahesh Bhatt’s youngest sister. He has also made many movies under the Vishesh Film’s banner like Murder 2 and Aashiqui 2.
Emraan Hashmi- The Bollywood actor is the nephew of Mahesh Bhatt and Mukesh Bhatt and the second cousin of Pooja, Rahul, Alia Bhatt on their paternal grandmother’s side. Emraan Hashmi has mostly worked as the lead actor in ‘Vishesh Films’ projects.
It has long been an open secret that Bollywood has prefered to promote its own progeny, and their friends and family. Pooja Bhatt, by not accepting this is only trying to run away from the undeniable fact.