Show stoppers: Time to stop their acts?

Posted by on Aug 23 2018

It’s strange. Some believe that films influence fashion. Yet what films do not want is most wanted in fashion.

Yesterday actor Shah Rukh Khan went to meet Raj Thakrey to request him not to stop his show of his film Raees. A couple of months ago Karan Johar did the same for his film Ae Dil Hai Mushkil. Both did not want ‘Show Stoppers.’

The analogy here may be misplaced. In one case it’s disruptive and in the other supportive. But I thought it would be interesting to play with the words ‘Show’ and ‘Stoppers’ to build a case in point that I staunchly believe in… that there should not be any showstoppers at fashion presentations, unless of course it’s a brand-sponsored showing where a designer is showing his/her collection and the brand ambassador makes an appearance. Here the fashion designer of course doesn’t have any say as the dough is put in by the brand concerned.


In normal cases I fail to understand why our fashion designers bring in actors – from A list to C list depending on their capacity to pay them – to their runways while making a collection presentations. I’ve always believed that if the intention is to show what they have made for the runway, and if they are confident that the collections are good enough, there is no need for them to drag these show stoppers to close their shows.

Yes I do understand the strategy. Newspapers today, for reasons I failed to fathom, gasp for movie actors for their pages. No offence to the movie stars here. I state this because every single day, columns after columns, these papers fill the space with the same actors who appear as show stoppers for some fashion designers. Then why such desperations to print the same actor again just because he or she appeared in a fashion designer’s show?

From a fashion designer’s or his/her PR agent’s point of view, it’s a well thought out strategy. They know some Editors are suckers for such pictures and the moment the designer brings in an actor, regardless of the status, the image will be printed. So, it works well for them. But are such tactics necessary?

It’s okay for an actor to be in the front row especially when he or she is a client or a friend of the fashion designer. This is what happens in such matured markets as New York, London, Milan and Paris. But here it’s just the opposite. Often, some fashion designers bring in a slew of actors and make them walk one after the other. Some bring in one and make her open the show. Most use them to ‘stop’ or ‘close’ shows (so, if the actor hasn’t been there the show would have continued endlessly like a runaway train, I wonder).

Some PR agents often send emails stating that certain actors will be the showstopper for their clients. Some even make it a point to call and tell me the same. And I tell them “So what?” I mean, how does it matter to me who the hell is the showstopper? I don’t even like the idea of a showstopper in the first place!

I feel, fashion designers should drop this idea. Imagine a day without these drams on the runway, a day when you don’t see caravans parked outside the show venue, shows starting on time as no-one is doing her last minute touch ups, a day when pure fashion fills the runway and the venue, and most importantly, as people come out of the show, they’re talking excitedly about the collection they saw on the runway and not how nice the actor looked as he/she walked the runway…

That will be the day!