Bollywood Star auditions kick off in Vancouver Saturday

Actress and dancer Anita Majumdar, actor Rupinder Nagra and filmmaker Richie Mehta. Galit Rodan/THE CANADIAN PRESS

LARISSA CAHUTE
VANCOUVER DESI

Auditions for Omni TV’s first-ever Bollywood Star reality series kick off in Vancouver on Saturday.

The reality show will follow 16 hopeful Canadian actors in various challenges, ultimately competing for a role in a Bollywood film in Mumbai.

The show is only in its premier season, so judges aren’t entirely sure what to expect from the upcoming auditions, in which competitors will be given a scene to act out, as well as perform a prepared dance to a pre-approved Bollywood tune.

One of three Bollywood Star judges, Rupinder Nagra — Indo-Canadian actor from critically acclaimed film Amal — said he’s looking for confidence and, of course, preparation.

“You can tell if someone’s actually done a proper preparation for the audition,” Nagra told Vancouver Desi Friday, referring to the choreography portion of the audition. “I’m looking for people who are going to come in and really kind of own that room and this is their moment to shine.”

“Be it charisma, talent — whatever it may be — what will you do in that room that will really kind of catch my attention and want to know more about you and want to see you kind of move on to the next round?”
And while Nagra acknowledged the audition may be nerve racking for many, he insisted the judges are “on their side.”
“I want to see them succeed,” he said.

Through auditions in both Vancouver and Toronto, the judges will ultimately narrow down the talent to 16 competitors for the show, then down to six finalists who will be sent to Mumbai to compete for the top prize.

And while not every hopeful actor will make it through the stiff competition, Nagra hopes the process will only inspire more people into an acting career.

“The Bollywood film industry is one of the biggest out there and I meet people or young kids who want to get into acting but they don’t know how to get into it,” he said. “Hopefully this type of show will give them a platform to meet people, to network a little bit more and also to kind of realize the amount of work that’s involved.”

Organizers are asking those planning to audition to get to the Vancouver Convention Centre by 7 a.m., where they can register on site. Arriving before 9 a.m. guarantees an audition. The Toronto auditions take place Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Toronto Congress Centre.

Other judges include Anita Majumdar, award-winning actress, playwright and dancer from Port Moody and Richie Mehta, a promising Canadian filmmaker whose movie Amal has earned more than 30 international awards.

For more audition information visit omnitv.ca/bollywoodstar.

lcahute@theprovince.com
twitter.com/larissacahute

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