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Is Bollywood As Incestuous As Some People Are Claiming It To Be?

Ranveer Singh, Varun Dhwan, Varun Sharma, Rohit Shetty and Jacqueline Fernandez together
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There was a time when Bollywood was known for the scene where the actor and actress run towards each other in the middle of a mustard field or the scene where the heroine sashays her hips in a flimsy Manish Malhotra saree. 

However, ever since that now-infamous Koffee with Karan episode with Kangana Ranaut, the world’s eyes have shifted to another aspect of Bollywood – its relationships. Nepotism has become the buzzword of the day and not even the biggest stars in the Hindi film industry have managed to deflect the audience’s ire.

But is Bollywood really as incestuous as Ranaut and her clan claim it is? We leave it for you to decide after reading this. 

While there are “outsiders” who have made it big in Bollywood (Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Katrina Kaif), the vast majority of top Bollywood stars have some familial connection in the industry.

Let’s start with the biggies – the Dharma Johars and the YRF Chopras. Karan Johar’s mother, Hiroo Johar is Yash Chopra’s relative. This makes Karan Johar and Aditya Chopra cousins.

 

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A post shared by Karan Johar (@karanjohar)

Then there’s Pamela Chopra who is the wife of late Bollywood icon, Yash Chopra. Pamela Chopra and Darshi Garewal are related in the sense that Darshi Garewal and Pamela Chopra’s father, Mohinder Singh are siblings. Now, you might be wondering – who is Darshi Garewal? She is the mother of India’s first celebrity talk-show host, Simi Garewal. 

This makes Simi Garewal and Pamela Chopra cousins. Following Rani Mukerji’s wedding to Aditya Chopra, the Garewal family is now also linked to the Mukerji family which also includes ace actress Kajol and director Ayan Mukerji. It is common knowledge that Kajol and Rani are paternal cousins and that Rani and Ayan are also paternal cousins. 

Coming to two of Bollywood’s most cherished actresses, Tabu and Shabana Azmi, we realise that the two were meant to be star actors – after all, it runs in their blood. Tabu’s father, Jamal Hashmi is Shabana Azmi’s brother. Shabana Azmi is married to Javed Akhtar and the two form the top pillar of the Akhtar-Azmi family which includes Farhan Akhtar, Zoya Akhtar, Farah Khan, Sajid Khan and yes, Saiyami Kher. Saiyami Kher and Tabu form the third generation of the Akhtar-Azmi film family.

 

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A post shared by Farhan Akhtar (@faroutakhtar)

Confused? Wait till we get to the many Kapoors. We’ll start with the easiest one – Shraddha Kapoor who is the daughter of actor Shakti Kapoor. Veteran actors Padmini Kolhapure and Tejaswini Kolhapure are her aunts but get this – India’s most respected singer, Lata Mangeshkar is Shraddha’s great aunt because her grandfather is a cousin to Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhosle.

We all know that Ranbir Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Karisma Kapoor are related. Following Kapoor Khan’s marriage to Saif Ali Khan, the Kapoors are also related to the illustrious Pataudi-Tagore family which counts Sharmila Tagore and Rabindranath Tagore. Taimur Ali Khan sure has some big shoes to fill.

 

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A post shared by Kareena Kapoor Khan (@kareenakapoorkhan)

If Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt do get married, the Kapoors will also get linked to the Bhatt family. While you may know that Mahesh Bhatt is Alia Bhatt’s father, we’re pretty sure you didn’t know that Emraan Hashmi is actually Alia Bhatt’s cousin because Mahesh Bhatt is Emraan Hashmi’s mama.

Coming to the other Kapoor clan, it all starts with Surinder Kapoor, a cousin of Prithviraj Kapoor. Surinder Kapoor fathered Boney Kapoor, Anil Kapoor, Sanjay Kapoor and Reena Kapoor. Boney Kapoor, in turn, fathered Arjun Kapoor and Janhvi and Khushi Kapoor. Anil Kapoor is the father of Sonam, Rhea and Harshvardhan Kapoor. Reena Kapoor married Sandeep Marwah and the two of them have a son called Mohit Marwah. 

And ever wondered why Sonam Kapoor Ahuja has never been paired opposite Ranveer Singh? That’s because Singh is Kapoor’s maternal cousin.

Coming to the Khans – Ali Zafar’s wife, Ayesha Fazli, is Aamir Khan’s cousin. Which means Zafar is former actor Imran Khan’s maternal uncle. Besides Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan, the other big Khan is actor Salman Khan. Salman Khan’s father is Salim Khan and his siblings are Arbaaz, Sohail, Alvira and Arpita Khan. Arbaaz Khan and Malaika Arora were previously married and Alvira Khan is married to filmmaker Atul Agnihotri. 

 

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A post shared by Salman Khan (@beingsalmankhan)

Actor Fardeen Khan’s uncle is Sanjay Khan who is father to Farah Khan, Zayed Khan and Suzanne Khan. Suzanne Khan was formerly married to actor Hrithik Roshan.

The new generation of Bollywood actors include Ishaan Khattar who is the son of Neelima Azeem. Azeem was Pankaj Kapur’s first wife and the two of them have a son, Shahid Kapoor. Everybody knows that Sara Ali Khan belongs to the Pataudi clan and that Alaya F is Pooja Bedi’s daughter and Kabir Bedi’s granddaughter. Alaya F made her film debut opposite Sara Ali Khan’s father, Saif Ali Khan. Ananya Panday is the daughter of actor Chunky Pandey and is reportedly dating Ishaan Khatter.

This isn’t even half of it but for now, we’ll give your brain a rest. Yes?

 

[Image Credit: Filmfare]

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