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The Official Student News Site of Parkway West High

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The Official Student News Site of Parkway West High

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Clubs collaborate to host first-ever Bollywood Movie Night

Moviegoers+smile+for+a+picture+after+watching+the+Bollywood+movie+%E2%80%9C3+Idiots.%E2%80%9D+The+event+ran+from+4-8+p.m.+on+Saturday%2C+March+9+and+was+open+to+students+across+the+Parkway+School+District.+%E2%80%9CI+decided+to+come+to+the+movie+night+because+I+wanted+to+introduce+my+non-Indian+friends+to+the+rich+culture+and+entertainment+of+Bollywood.+One+of+my+favorite+parts+%5Bof+the+night%5D+was+the+combination+of+%5Bthe%5D+amazing+food+and+the+pure+comedic+entertainment.+%5BIt%5D+was+unmatched%2C%E2%80%9D+sophomore+Aryan+Allu+said.+
Kevin Doherty
Moviegoers smile for a picture after watching the Bollywood movie “3 Idiots.” The event ran from 4-8 p.m. on Saturday, March 9 and was open to students across the Parkway School District. “I decided to come to the movie night because I wanted to introduce my non-Indian friends to the rich culture and entertainment of Bollywood. One of my favorite parts [of the night] was the combination of [the] amazing food and the pure comedic entertainment. [It] was unmatched,” sophomore Aryan Allu said.

On Saturday, March 9, members from four clubs from Parkway West and Parkway South hosted a joint Bollywood Movie Night in the West Theater for the first time. The four clubs — Parkway West Indian Club, Parkway West First Generation Club, Parkway West Asian Based Celebration Club and Parkway South South Asian Student Association — had planned the event for two months beforehand.

“I wanted to host a Bollywood movie night to showcase the cinematic culture of India. Bollywood movies are known for their amazing production and are even globally recognized. By hosting this event, I wanted to bring everyone together to enjoy the experience of Bollywood cinema while also appreciating the cultural significance of it,” Indian Club president and senior Puneeta Ganga said. 

Ganga, alongside the rest of the Indian Club board, made the decision to involve other clubs in the planning process for Bollywood Movie Night. Together, the clubs rose money and awareness about their existence to recruit more members.

“[We] decided to collaborate with other clubs because it opened up so many more opportunities. I got to share this experience with not only members of Parkway West Indian Club, but also [members of the other clubs.] By working together, we got to build meaningful relationships in the process,” Ganga said.

The clubs met up via Google Meet in the weeks leading up to March 9 to plan out the event’s structure, the logistics of financing food and renting out the theater for that night.

“We started [Parkway South South Asian Student Association] this year with the intention to create fun events students would enjoy that [relate] back to South Asian culture. Thanks to [Indian Club] reaching out, we got a chance to collaborate and learn from them,” Parkway South South Asian Student Association president and junior Amna Iqbal said.

After the initial work of getting the clubs on board, sending out RSVP forms to members of each club, marketing the event on their respective Instagram accounts and putting up flyers around the schools, there was just one question left: which movie would they watch? After much deliberation, Indian Club decided on “3 Idiots,” directed by Rajkumar Hirani. 

“[‘3 Idiots’] is famous for a reason: it’s fantastic. It tackles heavy topics, but balances [them] with humor so you don’t walk out of [it] feeling hopeless or depressed — you feel inspired,” junior Dima Layth said. “As the academic pressure has been rising this semester, we all needed that reminder that everything is going to be okay.”

Movie night began at 4 p.m., with guests arriving at the school to enjoy traditional Indian food catered from The Curry Club and converse with one another. The clubs chose to present a spread of vegetable samosas, chicken 65, gobi manchurian and pakoras. Then, at 5 p.m., they all took their seats and the movie began. 

“[‘3 Idiots’] uniquely features a comedic but emotional depth that is engaging and heartwarming all at once,” Indian Club activities director and senior Riya Ashok said. “It teaches us a life lesson while also making us laugh.”

With about 50 attendees showing up to watch, the turnout of the movie night surprised everyone involved in planning it.

“Cultural celebrations like [Bollywood Movie Night] are important because they promote cultural competency and increased awareness for other traditions and communities. That’s really vital for empathy and inclusivity, which should always be the goal in any setting, especially educational.” 

— Indian Club Activities Director and senior Riya Ashok

“To advertise [the movie night] we printed out the posters that West’s Indian Club gave us, and we posted about it on both our club and personal Instagrams. We were all happy with the turnout,” Parkway South South Asian Student Association Treasurer and sophomore Mariam Rana said. 

After the movie concluded, board members from different clubs stayed to clean up the theater and to discuss possible future joint events.

“I want to collaborate on events such as Bollywood [movie] night again, especially since I met a different community that has the same interest as us,” Iqbal said. “Movie night itself was a huge hit and I definitely hope that we can create events such as this again.”

Bollywood Movie Night served as a great example of the wealth of cultures that are within the Parkway School District and the different ways that students can express those cultures. Through hosting, the clubs were able to create a safe space for those who are Bollywood fans and also a space where students who aren’t well-versed in South Asian culture to explore its intricacies in a welcoming environment. 

 

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Samir Shaik, Multimedia/Sports Editor
Pronouns: he/him Grade: 11 Years on staff: 3 What is your favorite piece of literature? "The Rainbow Fish." Who is your hero? My mom. If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be? Peaches.
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