Abhay Deol reveals details about nepotism in Bollywood, one film at a time

Abhay Deol reveals details about nepotism in Bollywood, one film at a time

"Almost all award functions demoted me and Farhan from main leads, and nominated us as 'supporting actors' for Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara.”
25 Jun, 2020

The unfortunate demise of actor Sushant Singh Rajput has sparked an ongoing debate in Bollywood regarding nepotism, favouritism, and all the ways in which the industry is far from welcoming newcomers.

Taking to social media, actor Abhay Deol is speaking up about the prejudice he faced while simultaneously calling out award shows.

In a post on Instagram, the actor referred to his 2012 film Shanghai and how it dealt with systemic corruption in politics front and center.

"Extremely relevant today. Looks like these days one could make a film about the corrupt practices of Bollywood!" he said.

"By the way, not sure if the current outrage will give rise to an independent Hindi film and music industry, without the unoriginal tag of “Bollywood”, but it sure feels good to hear loud voices from within the industry, risking their careers for the bigger “picture” (pun intended)"

A photo posted by Instagram (@instagram) on

Previously, Abhay spoke up against the discrimination he faced during the shooting of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara.

According to Deol, despite being one of the leads of an ensemble cast, his nomination at award functions was demoted to just a "supporting" one against Katrina Kaif and Hrithik Roshan; implying that the story was a love story rather than a journey of three friends on a Euro trip.

A photo posted by Instagram (@instagram) on

"I would like to mention that almost all the award functions demoted me and Farhan from main leads, and nominated us as 'supporting actors'. Hrithik and Katrina were nominated as 'actors in a leading role'”.

So by the industry’s own logic, this was a film about a man and a woman falling in love, with the man supported by his friends for whatever decisions he takes."

"There are many covert and overt ways in which people in the industry lobby against you. In this case it was shamelessly overt. I ofcourse, boycotted the awards but Farhan was ok with it #familyfareawards," he ended.

Deol was last seen in the Netflix original Chopsticks.


Islam Baig Jun 25, 2020 05:46pm
frustration displayed by industry fellows who use their talent to establish themselves in understandable. On one hand, it my money, my movie and I will pick and choose who I want to label as lead. On the other hand, if talent is ignored, Bollywood will lose diversity of talent. Nepotism can go someway but it’s industry responsibility to encourage and protect talent.
Dlip Jun 25, 2020 06:37pm
Bollywood mafia has taken lives of many for their selfish agenda. Very sad.
Merewether Jun 25, 2020 09:35pm
Nepotism is in all film and TV industries. Hollywood, the UK, Lollywood and of course, Bollywood. So nothing new there.
Talha Jun 25, 2020 09:50pm
Least bothered about it, I watch only Turkish TV nowadays.
Zulfiqar Jun 25, 2020 11:47pm
Very good observation. Maybe it has something to do with star power. The two main leads you mentioned have produced many hits on their own, maybe that has something to do with industry nominating them as lead roles in the movie. I mean would the movie be the same if you remove those two? Will it be as successful? Not to say that everyone didn't act really well in the movie.
Marquis de Sade Jun 26, 2020 06:31am
Farhan is like father: do anything for gain.
Pendoo Jun 26, 2020 06:33am
Some shining examples of nepotism from Pakistan: PML(N) leaders are only born in a single family, and there is zero talent outside of it. PPP leaders only come from Bhutto dynasty. Look at the whole entertainment industry and you will find many more examples of nepotism. It's embedded in the psyche of our people and part and parcel of culture i.e., India and Pakistan.
Sac Jun 26, 2020 07:27am
Nepotism also exists in higher education. It exists in all areas with big money, fame and power. It always did. Look at nepotism from a standpoint of safeguarding positions. Then the optics change. Yet nepotism is a race to mediocrity. It should always be fought.
Ramesh Jun 26, 2020 07:34am
Nepotism is common anywhere. BUT it is more so in politics and entertainment industry and wherever the potential of making money is high!
N abidai Jun 26, 2020 08:55am
Isn't abey deol a nepo kid ?
saaah83 Jun 26, 2020 01:31pm
Chopsticks is fantastic movie and he is one of my favorite actors. Dev D was fantastic and you art doesnt need any paid awards.
Jayashree Jun 26, 2020 07:30pm
There is nepotism in Indian film industry. We live by a concept of "and they lived happily ever after". Our films are centered around hero and heroine but not by the characters and role played to complete the story or bring out the best talent. Negative roles: I quote who can forget Pran who was villan in film Industy on screen. His acting dialogues, expression body and visual language was the success of many heroes and heroine. It was only after he had amnesia he got the Dada Sahib Phalke or life time achievement award. Zindagi na milegi donar was not about hero or heroine. The subject is in the title itself. Do we need to regulate the film Industry? Yes we do. If we want to have real talent then we must stop exploitation of new, junior artists. There is a dire need to stop this first family, khandaan, or kings of film industries. We need regulatory bodies plus proper counseling of artists, grievance cell, legal cell to protects rights of all artists