Prominent filmmakers and consumer analysts explain what makes Amitabh Bachchan the hot brand that he is, even at 80. Watch the video story here
When he first began acting in 1969 Tamil Nadu was still called Madras State; the Rajdhani Express was launched, the Congress split into two factions led by Indira Gandhi and Morarji Desai, ISRO was set up and banks were nationalised.
When he did his first TVC in 1996, India was high on the euphoria of liberalisation and the economy was coming into its own. The big question is: what keeps him going at 80?
Having played the lead role in over a hundred films Amitabh Bachchan has established himself as the country’s greatest actor. And with over countless ad campaigns targeted at the young, middle-aged, and elderly, Bachchan is also India’s go-to brand ambassador.
According to research agency Hansa’s annual list of brand endorsers in July 2022, Bachchan was ahead of Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar and Shah Rukh Khan. Many of them half his age.
Truly, there hasn’t been a phenomenon quite like Bachchan when it comes to taking on this task.
Acclaimed ad filmmaker R Balki, who has directed Bachchan in three movies, says “Bachchan the phenomenon lends power to Bachchan the brand. He's a brand that is a brand. Not even he understands the power of the of that brand. To me, the brand Bachchan is a phenomenon that happens once in a million years.”
Filmmaker Nitesh Tiwari, who has done two features with Bachchan (the Bhootnath franchise) and has also been associated with Kaun Banega Crorepati right from inception says, he's the darling of many brands.
Almost every major brand and advertising guru in the country agrees that the actor brings the perfect cocktail of ingredients to the party.
Iconic advertising professional Piyush Pandey perceives Brand Bachchan like a diamond and not just for its permanence and sparkle. He says, “He is like a diamond, you polish it and it glows more.”
For consumer analyst Karan Taurani, Bachchan spells reliability, energy and trust. He says, “I think Brand Bachchan gets three words in my mind at the top of my head. Reliable, trustworthy and energetic at that age of 80. I think these are three words that come to everyone's mind. Be it the advertiser, the consumer or the target audience.”
Today, the magic of Brand Bachchan continues to serenade leading filmmakers and ad mavens alike. To know the whole story of why Brand Bachchan is unique not just in the Indian context but also when seen in the global scenario, watch the story The Brandfather, streaming on News9 Plus.
(This article first appeared on News9 Plus. It has not been edited by Connected to India staff.)