Versatile actor Boman Irani says the Indian diaspora is a huge market for Bollywood films and filmmakers should tap that for a wider reach and bigger business.
"Diaspora is a huge market for us (Bollywood films) and we underestimate its power, totally," the 54-year-old, who will be next seen in Shah Rukh Khan-starrer "Happy New Year", told IANS on phone from Mumbai before leaving for SLAM! THE TOUR.
"They are not the extended audience, but very much part of our main audiences. We have to respect that fact," he added.
According to a report, the Indian population in the US has increased exponentially over the past few years to become the second largest group after the Chinese with over 2,800,000 Indian Americans.
Keeping the fact in mind, "Happy New Year" team has embarked on multi-city tour, which started Friday at Toyota Center, Houston, to woo the NRI audiences and create a buzz about the heist drama coming out on Diwali.
From the film's main leads Shah Rukh and Deepika Padukone to supporting casts - Abhishek Bachchan, Sonu Sood and Vivaan Shah -- all will shake a leg during the multi-city concerts.
Director Farah Khan will join the revelry too and interestingly, this will be her first stage performance in 25 years.
After Houston, they will perform in other US cities such as New Jersey, Washington DC, and Chicago as well as in Vancouver, Canada. After the US, they will head to London Oct 5.
"The fact that our tour got a positive response even before it started proves how important is the diaspora market for us and for anybody.
"I think slowly and steadily things will change and soon we will see the transformation," added Boman.
Produced by Shah Rukh's Red Chillies Entertainment, "Happy New Year" is centred on six losers who set out to change their destiny.
Boman says one of the highlights of the film is its multi-cultural cast, which belongs to different age groups.
"Just like the character, even the cast of the film comes from different places. Sonu is from Punjab, Abhishek lived in Mumbai and his whole background was different. I belong to a Parsi family -- so all of us came from different background. It's such an unusual mix, but we had a common purpose.
"We wanted to make it one hell of entertainer that people will remember for years to come. So the moment you have a common purpose, I think anybody from any walk of life, background, age or gender will get back together," he added.
And is he satisfied with the end result?
"Yes, I am satisfied. Everybody did every scene together. That is the greatness of the story," said Boman, who was previously seen in hits like "Munnabhai M.B.B.S", "Lage Raho Munna Bhai", "Khosla Ka Ghosla", and "Don - The Chase Begins Again" and "3 Idiots".