Will Smith on "Indian Idol"

Is there anything this man can't do?

Published April 6, 2007 5:27PM (EDT)

Gosh darn it, Will Smith has a nice smile. I don't know which is more endearing, his attempt to sing in Hindi, or the delighted expressions of his astonished listeners as he pulls off an apparently credible effort.

Thanks go to DesiPundit for linking to Sayesha's Blog, which features a link to a short video hosted on YouTube. Also worth noting is Sayesha's commentary:

And as I ooh'ed and ah'ed over how adorable Will Smith is in this video, I had a thought -- why is it that when an Indian sings like an American, he's "aping the west," but when an American sings like an Indian, he is "CHO CHWEET" and "HOW CUUUUTE"? Is it that all we have are apes but nothing ape-worthy? (Errrm, no offense to the Indian cricket team.)

Well, maybe it will happen. Maybe one day in the future, American parents would be complaining, "Damn globalisation! Damn TV! The kids of today are so Indianised! They eat at home, do well in exams, respect their parents, and have like 'culture' and 'values' and stuff. Sheesh. All this aping of the east... what will happen to the future of this generation??"

By Andrew Leonard

Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21.

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Globalization How The World Works India