Just two days after the frenzy over Hollywood actor Orlando Bloom being deported back to the UK broke out, photographs of the Lord Of The Rings star visiting India's famous Taj Mahal were shared vigorously on social media.
38-year-old English actor Bloom was officially invited to India by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday, when he was denied entry into the country because his e-visa had not been cleared, reported The Guardian.
But the good-natured actor agreed to fly back the same weekend to see the Taj Mahal after India's foreign minister Sushma Swaraj got to get the Indian High Commission in London to provide him with the relevant documents over the weekend.
But why was Bloom so eager to visit India? The reason: he has a personal India connection few people know about.
According to a report in the Hindustan Times, Bloom's mother was born in Kolkata, while his grandfather was a doctor in India. Growing up seeing the beautiful photographs of the Taj Mahal, taken by his grandfather from "every possible angle", Bloom was eager to see the monument himself.
— Hindustan Times (@htTweets) December 21, 2015
Speaking at an event hosted politician Amar Singh in Delhi, Bloom told HT, “We had a wonderful trip to Agra. I was so overwhelmed by its beauty."
He was so taken with the beauty of the ancient monument, on his 45-minute tour that he sat quietly by himself at the end of the tour. A Taj Mahal official told The Guardian, “At the end of his visit, he moved away from the group and sat by himself cross-legged in front of the 17th-century marble monument, eyes closed, chanting a prayer."
We live in a country where Amar Singh gets to hang with Orlando Bloom. pic.twitter.com/3PnmhM10iu
— Shiv Aroor (@ShivAroor) December 21, 2015
Mingling with India's who's who, Bloom also ended up chatting to Bollywood producer Boney Kapoor as well as actresses as well as Sridevi and Jaya Prada, said an article in HT.
In fact, he was stupefied by the number of films actress Sridevi had done. "Three hundred films. How did you manage that? How much time do you take to make one film?" he asked her.
Bloom was accompanied by Sheetal Talwar, producer of his upcoming film Romans.
After being followed by news crews and social media enthusiasts, HT reported him as saying, "I want to explore the country without any media attention.”
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