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Ash is Time's queen

October 20, 2003 13:49 IST

Aishwarya RaiCelebrating Indian cinema's arrival on the world stage, Time magazine has come out with a cover story on the changing face of Bollywood. The magazine, which projects Aishwarya Rai as Bollywood's 'queen', has the former Miss World on the cover of its latest issue.

The article also highlights crossover movies, films with bold themes and the increasing Western interest in Bollywood.

The weekly, which focuses on the younger generation in its latest issue, describes Aamir Khan as 'India's most respected and versatile young actor' and praises director Ram Gopal Varma for 'ditching song-and-dance fantasies for urban grittiness.'

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Heaping lavish praise on Aishwarya, the magazine describes her as 'India's standard bearer' and says 'she may position herself as New Bollywood in terms of roles but, in person, Rai embodies the Indian middle class and the very old Bollywood ideal -- a modern girl with traditional values. For someone emerging as a 21st century film star, there are few people less likely to turn into a Western style sex kitten.'

The magazine points out that the Indian film industry releases an average of 1,000 films as compared to Hollywood's 740 and attracts a world audience -- from Kuala Lumpur to Cape Town -- of 3.6 billion, compared to Hollywood's 2.6 billion.

It lists Awara, Mother India, Sholay, Ankur, Bombay and Devdas among the '10 Indian films to treasure.'

But the article, which includes interviews with legendary Amitabh Bachchan and director Mira Nair, among others, has little to say about the film industry in Chennai and Kolkata.

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