Back to the big screen

With a host of films ready to hit the theatres, 2021 is definitely a year to look forward to

The year 2020 will definitely be a big milestone in world history. But so will 2021, as it seems to be the year which is carrying every human being’s hope – of a world devoid of infection, sudden deaths, masks, hand sanitisers, temperature checks, social distancing and more. As badly as we all want this global pandemic to end this year, the film fraternity are also hoping for better and brighter days ahead.

There isn’t an iota of doubt that in the world of cinema – be it production or consumption – everything changed owing to the pandemic. In India, like other countries, movie halls remained closed and as a result OTT platforms emerged as the dominant source of entertainment. But now, with the renewed hope of vaccination, the process of which is underway already and with halls functioning – Bollywood seems like it’s ready to make its comeback to the big screens!

With a host of films ready to hit the theatres – 2021 is definitely a year to look forward to. Moreover, several big-budget movies that couldn’t see the light of the day are also lined up to make their way to the big screen this year.

Rohit Shetty’s Sooryavanshi, starring  Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif, which was just about to release before the pandemic hit, may release in the first or second quarter of the year, depending on the situation. Kumar also has Bachchan Pandey, Atrangi Re and Bell Bottom in various stages of production. Being one of B-town’s busiest stars, Kumar seems to hang his hope high on theatres, especially after his OTT release last year Laxmii failed to impress the audience.

The release of Kabir Khan’s  83, the film which narrates the story of India’s first Cricket World Cup victory in the year 1983, also got delayed in 2020. Ranveer Singh will be seen essaying the role of Kapil Dev and his actor-wife Deepika Padukone will be seen as Romi Dev in the film. For Singh, 83 is predicted to be one of his landmark characters.

Salman Khan, another star who preferred to keep a distance from OTT platforms, is likely to be seen on iscreens in his next action-drama Radhe. The film, which is most likely to release on Eid, is directed by Prabhudeva – who is reuniting with Khan after Dabangg  3. The film also stars Khan’s Bharat co-star Disha Patani and Randeep Hooda.

Poster of Gangubai Kathiawadi (Credit: Wikipedia)

Ajay Devgn’s Maidaan, a much-awaited sports drama, will see him essay the role of Syed Abdul Rahim, who served as the coach and manager of the Indian football team from 1950 until his death in 1963. This is the only big film to have locked its release date on October 15.  Coming from Amit Sharma, the filmmaker who has given hits like Maidaan and Badhaai Ho!, it is definitely something to look forward to.

Aamir Khan-starrer Laal Singh Chadda, which is the official adaptation of Hollywood mega-hit Forrest Gump, directed by  Advait Chandan of Secret Superstar fame is also likely to release on the big screens this year. The film also stars Kareena Kapoor Khan, Vijay Setupathi and Mona Singh.

Brahmastra, by filmmaker Ayan Mukherji, the three-film fantasy adventure series produced by Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions and Fox Star Studios is probably one of the most-awaited films of this year. The film stars Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Amitabh Bachchan, Nagarjuna and Mouni Roy.

Karan Malhotra’s Shamshera, starring Ranbir Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt and Vaani Kapoor, is an action entertainer which also awaits a release. Gangubai Kathiawadi by Sanjay Leela Bhansali has been the talk of the town for long. The film has been adapted from one of the chapters of noted author Hussain Zaidi’s book, Mafia Queens of Mumbai. It features Alia Bhatt as Gangubai, one of the most powerful madams from Kamathipura in the 1960s.

Yash Raj Films’ (YRF) Jayeshbhai Jordaar , a humorous entertainer set in Gujarat directed by debutant Divyaang Thakkar, stars Ranveer Singh in its titular character. The film, as the critics claim, has been made for the theatres and hence would skip an OTT release.

YRF is also set to make its biopic on Prithiviraj Chauhan, starring Akshay Kumar and Miss World 2017 Manushi Chhillar. On the other hand, Shahid Kapoor-starrer  Jersey finished its schedule and is all set for post-production. The film chronicles the story of a talented but failed cricketer, who decides to return to the field in his late 30s driven by the desire to represent the Indian cricket team and fulfil his son’s wish for a jersey as a gift.

Many other films like Shoojit Sircar-directed Sardar Udham, a biopic on Udham Singh, starring Vicky Kaushal, Rani Mukerji’s Bunty Aur Babli 2 and Taapsee Pannu-starrer Rashmi Rocket also await their releases.

With a host of such promising films, one can definitely hope that 2021 will make up for the losses that the pandemic entailed. Moreover, a house full of audience hooting and cheering once their beloved stars appears on-screen – is what this year might yet again bring back to life.

(Cover image: Poster of Sooryavanshi)

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