Friendship in showbiz - a reality or farce?

Chennai: No matter how affable and friendly film personalities appear in public eye, their friendship always draws attention for all the wrong reasons such as actresses` catfights to stars` battle for film releases. This raises the question - is friendship in showbiz a reality or a farce?

Let`s take a look at what film celebrities have to say about friendship on the occasion of Friendship Day, which falls on Aug 3.

For actress Piaa Bajpai, who believes in "well-wishers", friendship in filmdom lacks consistency.

"I believe in the concept of well-wishers over friends because friendship keeps changing in the industry. It`s never consistent. Your best friend can become your worst foe over work. I have experienced it over the years," Piaa said.

"I don`t blame anyone because you`re in an industry where you compete for the same position with so many others. Even if you were competing with your best friend, why would anyone give up so easily? I`ve been in the industry for about six years now but I`ve hardly made any friends. I only have well-wishers," she said.

Southern star Harshvardhan Rane too has hardly any friends in the industry. But he always finds "brotherly warmth" around him.

"When you have friends in the industry, you`re always expected to talk about work. Seldom do you talk about stuff outside work with friends in the industry. Therefore, I don`t have many actor friends but I find lot of brotherly warmth from a few," Rane said.

"I know Rana (Rana Daggubati) quite well. We keep bumping into each other at gym. I find that brotherly warmth from him. I call him anna (brother) and he`s very friendly. I feel it`s tough to make friend when you`re always thinking about work," he added.

Actors Nakul and Anupama Kumar are against the clichéd thought that making friends is challenging in filmdom.

"I think it`s very much possible to have friends in the industry. But I feel friendship especially between actors depends a lot on their psyche. If you don`t let your work intervene, there`s absolutely nothing to worry about," Nakul said.

"Krishna (actor Krishna Kulasekaran) and I are great friends. We talk about each other`s career and have no issues discussing it. We just follow a healthy way of talking about our work and that has never affected our relationship," Nakul added.

Anupama may feel "lucky" to have made some great friends in the industry, but she added: "I would have been friends with them irrespective of the industry they belong to. I`m not friends with them because they`re actors too".

"Only when someone brings the actor status between friends, their relationship turns bitter. I agree at times actors lock horns over work, but if they`re mature enough they shouldn`t let it affect their friendship."

Having too many friends sometimes might cause problems, says 80-year old filmmaker Bapu aka Sattiraju Lakshmi Narayana.

Bapu and late writer Mullapudi Venkataramana have been best friends since 1942.

"I don`t believe in having too many friends. It`s tough to keep in touch with all of them. What`s the point of having so many friends when you don`t keep in touch? Ramana has been the only friend I`ve had in the industry and we`ve been so close because we were friends from school days," Bapu said.

"We`ve been thick friends because we grew up together, entered the industry with a common vision and never let our fame affect our relationship. Even as friends, we were never social and let our work do the talking," he added.

Bapu and Ramana have worked together on several memorable Telugu films. They even stayed in the same compound here for many years.

Nakul too has a similar thought.

"Most actors with filmy background know each other from childhood, and therefore, become great friends. It`s sometimes difficult for actors with no filmy background to find good friends and that`s precisely why I feel friendship is temperamental in the industry," Nakul said.

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