Bollywood. When the name was born, it was adored, loved and cuddled by everyone, just as any other eagerly-awaited, answer-to-all-problems new-born would be. As it grew, it proved itself to be interesting, funny, lively and full of mischief. Over time, it became renowned for its uniqueness: unique in being the only name in the world that was derived from its Holly original.

For some, the name signified their starstruck admiration and appreciation of Hollywood. For others, it was like raising their most meaningful finger at the Hollyer-than-thou Hollywood.

As years passed, the name caught on, mainly because of its convenience – rather than as a word pregnant with meaning – especially considering that its alternative was “Hindi Fillum Indaashtry.”

Today ‘Bollywood’ – the name and the entity it stands for – has become so popular that even Hollywood celebrities (are said to) recognise (and revere) it.
Which is all very good.

Now, isn’t it stretching things a bit tooooooooo far, far beyond Kanyakumari, when the South in turn adapts from Bollywood (which is already an adapted-to-boredom version), not just once, but four times over, and names themselves Kollywood, Tollywood, Mollywood and – hold your breath – Sandalwood.
And we complain incessantly about lack of originality.

For the uninitiated, the K- and M- versions stand for the languages they are based in, namely, Kannada and Malayalam. (Mollywood? Mollywood? For crying out loud!)

Because both Telugu and Tamil begin with ‘T’, some one who deserves to be bestowed the National award for creativity, suggested the brilliant new name, Sandalwood. (Deafening applause). To this day I don’t know which is which. Nor do I care, but I digress.

What are we supposed to make of a statement like this?
“After her debut in Mollywood, she moved on to try her luck in Tollywood and is today the reigning princess of Kollywood and Sandalwood.”