Falling Uphill book cover and Scott standing on the edge of Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa
A DVD of the Bollywood movie “Chura Liyaa Hai Tumne."
My long sought after DVD of the Bollywood blockbuster movie “Chura Liyaa Hai Tumne."

My Bollywood debut as a backup dancer

Chura Liya Hai Tumne. “You stole my heart.”

Another frequent question about my trip is people asking if I can post a scene from my movie. “Nothing beats a bad Bollywood movie!” they say. Surprisingly, I found the movie, amongst thousands of others, in the very unlikely place of my hometown Milwaukee on the shelves of the local Indian grocer. I tried to upload a scene, but got my account flagged. Oops! Finally, someone has posted a licensed copy of the music video on Youtube.

This is my debut video as a backup dancer in a Bollywood movie. This video took three days to film. I heard the song play hundreds of times. Oh, it was torture. I absolutely hated this song. But, now, I absolutely love it. Weird. I must have been brainwashed. Can you spy me dancing? It’s tricky. I’m in the crowd a lot but featured fairly prominently in one scene.

This is the catchy song “Mohabbat Hai Mirchi” from the movie “Chura Liyaa Hai Tumne,” the Bollywood movie that Scott starred in… well, it was more of a supporting role… Okay, actually, he was just a backup dancer. Okay, okay, a backup to the backup dancers.

I first saw the music video in a hotel room on MTV. I had a fever from dengue fever and I swear when I saw an extended cut of myself dancing on Indian MTV I thought I was hallucinating. And again, my head would spin when I would see the movie premiere in the theater with the disclaimer, “All people in this movie are fictitious.” I thought, “Am I fictitious?” Descartes must have had a similar experience wondering if he existed that culminated in his famous expression, “I think, therefore I am.”

There is a story in my book Falling Uphill about making the Bollywood movie in Mumbai, India. It was a strange experience being treated like a celebrity and being paid ten times more than the people in my hotel earn working day and night. They slept in the hotel lobby behind the desk. In the story, I meet a wretched boy and a homeless man that cause me to confront my newfound fame and fortune.

About this movie

The Bollywood movie that I was in is called “Chura Liyaa Hai Tumne”, which means something like “You robbed me of my girlfriend.” Sometimes the movie translates to something like, “You stole my heart,” which must be a reference to an older famous song, “You have already stolen my heart.” (Chura Liya Hai Tumne Jo Dil Ko.) Supposedly, this film was inspired by the 1963 Hollywood film Charade. This movie was supposed to be blockbuster that summer even though it rates only a 3.9/10 on IMDB. The description reads, “An old acquaintance (Zayed Khan) may have ulterior motives when he helps a young woman (Esha Deol) evade the slimy associates of her late uncle in Bangkok.” And even though our video took place it in a Bangkok nightclub, it was filmed in Mumbai and there wasn’t a Thai person anywhere.

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More stories about the making of Falling Uphill

The new book on the floor of the printer's shop waiting to be bound. Each stack is a set of pages.

The making of the book

Here is my new book on the floor of the print shop waiting to be bound. It’s the Spanish edition of the kid’s book, “Falling Uphill: The Secret of Life.” I needed to hover over the guys at the print shop because it just wasn’t getting done on schedule. Aah! And the books need to be on an airplane to Argentina the next day!

Cayendo Hacia Arriba Paraguay Peace Corp 03

Falling Uphill in Paraguay with the Peace Corps

Scott Stoll is an author from my hometown who served as the U.S. Embassy’s cultural ambassador in Argentina during the 2011-2012 school year. His time in Argentina and collaboration with Argentine schools resulted in a Spanish language version of his book, Falling Uphill: The Secret of Life, about his 4 year journey around the world on his bicycle.