Forever the Extra: The Alternate Reality of a Bollywood Struggler

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Forever the Extra: The Alternate Reality of a Bollywood Struggler

Illustration: Akshita Monga

I

was introduced to Ramesh Gupta by my former husband. Ramesh was yet another aspiring actor in the snaking, seemingly endless queue of “strugglers” that I’d meet during the time I lived in a one-BHK in Mumbai’s Lokhandwala, the stairway to Bollywood heaven.  

Ramesh had quit a cushy government job in Kanpur and decided to come to Bombay to chase his dream. His fodder was the encouragement from a distant relative, who had moved to Mumbai to try his luck at acting. The relative too, was a Bollywood aspirant, a struggler without any connections.

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