Okay, we know. The year 2020 has started on a terrible note for Bollywood. In all of January and February, there was only one superhit, and that was the Ajay Devgn-helmed Tanhaji. Amidst a slew of disappointments, we can assure you the year has several biggies lined up. Looking at the biggest of the biggies this year.
1. Baaghi 3: I don’t know how and when it happened. But Tiger Shroff is now the biggest action hero since Hrithik Roshan. Baaghi 3 will be proof of Tiger’s titanic stardom. Producer Sajid Nadiadwala promises action like never before that will leave the fans of the Baaghi franchise stunned and hankering for more. Shot in the virgin locales of Serbia (doubling up as Syria) this one is going to knock the bottom out of the action genre. Shraddha Kapoor, Tiger’s Soul Mate from the first Baaghi film, is back with him. The film has released and is doing really well.
2. Sooryavanshi: Bollywood’s most reliable star-actor, a.k.a Akki The Complete Package, Akshay Kumar teams up with super-director Rohit Shetty for the first time for a proposed franchise. Akshay plays the upright no-nonsense cop, very different from Ajay Devgn’s Rohit Shetty-helmed Singham. Again, it is an out-and-out actioner with Akshay’s old co-star (and by old, we are not saying anything about her age) Katrina Kaif who has also performed daring stunts apart from giving her guy some romantic company. (Releasing 25 March).
3. ’83: Sports drama meets bio-pic, Ranveer Singh meets Kabir Khan and Ranveer meets his wife Deepika Padukone again after Padmaavat. Gosh, are you still reading this? Or have you rushed to book your tickets already? ’83 is both a chronicle of India’s cricket victory at the 1983 World Cup and a bio-pic of the captain of the cricket team Kapil Dev played by Ranveer. Ranveer’s wife Deepika plays Kapil Dev’s wife Romi. Nice bit of credible casting there. Releasing 10 April.
4. Radhe: Salman Khan and Eid are as inseparable as Akshay Kumar and patriotic weekends. Radhe is a cops drama directed by Prabhudheva, it’s the unofficial sequel to Salman-Prabhu’s Wanted in 2008. Why an unofficial sequel? Because Salman is no longer on talking terms with the Wanted producer Boney Kapoor. Why are they not talking? Never mind. What matters is Radhe will bring back the angry cop, jo ek baar commitment kar liya toh kisiki nahin sunta. Sirf Boxoffice ki sunta hai. Releasing 22 May
5. Gangubai Kathiawadi: Sanjay Leela Bhansali teams up with Alia Bhatt to tell the real-life story of the Mumbai ganglord rather, gang-lady who shook the underworld. No songs, no romance, no hanky-panky for Alia. It’s a complete change of image for the popular actress, and also for the director whose costume dramas had begun to look disturbingly déjà vu. This year the female heroes are not working at the box office. Taapsee Pannu in Thappad and Alia Bhatt in this film are likely to change that. Releasing 11 September.
6. Toofan: Farhan Akhtar and Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra gave us one of India’s finest sports films in Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, the story of Olympian sprinter Milkha Singh. This time they are back together for another sports drama, this time a fictional saga of a boxer. Going by Farhan’s dedicated preparation for the role, this could be Farhan’s own version of Robert de Niro’s Raging Bull. Releasing on 2 October
7. Brahmastra: Karan Johar’s most expensive production to date brings the real-life Jodi of Alia Bhatt and Ranbir Kapoor together for the first time. Ranbir’s bestie Ayan Mukerjee directs what is being touted as Indian cinema’s first sci-fi drama. The mighty Amitabh Bachchan in his second feature this year (the first being the fascinating Gulabo Sitabo on 17 April) who adores Ranbir’s craft, plays a pivotal role. Oh yes, Shah Rukh Khan has a guest appearance in the mother of all multi-starrers. Releasing 4 December
8. Lal Singh Chaddha: And finally Aamir Khan and Christmas. Need I say anything more? I am not very sure if we actually need an Indian version of the Tom Hanks classic Forrest Gump. But then Aamir the master strategist thinks Forrest Gump alias, Lal Singh Chadha (no relation to Richa) is just the healing message on humanism that our wounded civilization needs. Kareena Kapoor Khan who doesn’t mind doing small roles with the three Khan superstars (her husband the fourth Khan, and she have decided not to work together for now) joins Aamir. Contrary to rumours Mr Hanks is not making an appearance. But who cares? Will Smith was in Student Of The Year 2 and how did it make a difference? Aamir needs no props. Thanks, but no Hanks. Releasing 25 December.