#BollywoodCulture to bring people together: Kenneth Hopkins, BollyCon

Entertainment | May 15, 2018 | Interview


Bollywood Culture has always existed and it's no surprise that it continues to grow more rapidly than ever. However, the time has come when the communities that celebrate Bollywood Culture have begun to organize. BollyCon: Bollywood Cultural Convention, is an event IP that harnesses the unifying power of #BollywoodCulture to bring people together across the boundaries of ethnicity, denominations, demographics, and geographies. Kenneth Hopkins Founder of BollyCon shares his ideation with EVENTFAQS:  

How did you conceptualise BollyCon?

During my study days in London through a Bollywood song, I realised how much I miss home. It was a very emotional experience for me. After that, I realized #Bollywod Culture was a vital part of my core identity. In 2013, I managed a PR activity for the now famous Iftaar party where SRK and Salman Khan hugged each other putting an end to their feud that had lasted for a while. The response that story got from around the globe validated my theory about the unifying power of #BollywoodCulture. That is how the idea came to me - BollyCon: A Bollywood Cultural Convention, that harnesses the unifying power of #BollywoodCulture to bring people together. 

What kind of challenges did you face in the process?

Conventions need communities that exhibit a particular behavioural pattern and understanding our psychographic to create a format that appeals to the different segments took a lot of research which was not easy. Now that we understand our audience better our formats and programming have become more engaging and we have hit critical mass in terms of our community. As a curator and custodian, I have to be very picky about the movies we promote. We want to be the appropriators of cultural expressions in the industry that can have a positive social impact. It is harder to say 'no' than it may seem but this is a challenge that I need to face and come out on top every single time.

What is BollyCon aimed towards?

BollyCon is an Offline Community Aggregator with a series of objectives, the first of which is increasing social cohesion through the appropriation of a more active Bollywood Culture. The second of course is commercial, where we seek to increase audience stake in Bollywood cinematic content through merchandise, meet and greets, and access to exclusive supplementary content. This has the capability of increasing content longevity and could help grow market sizes for content producers. In the long run, we also hope this project could help grow Indian Soft Power overseas. 

Can you share few examples of similar events which have taken place previously? 

There are many conventions out there but each convention must have a different experiential offering that caterers to its unique user base and that had been our focus. 

Kenneth Hopkins Founder of BollyCon speaks about coming up with a unifying effort through Bollywood Culture

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