Despite pandemic induced blues, the film industry hopes to return with a bang to theatres
While 2020 has been difficult, the Hindi film industry hopes that 2021 will prove to be better for all stakeholders including the audience. The pandemic may have sprung up unprecedented challenges in the way of screening films but with cinema halls reopening, makers and avid film goers anticipate happier times at the theatres. Here is an overview of some of the most eagerly anticipated films of 2021:
*Bellbottom:* This Pooja entertainment production was in news for becoming the first Bollywood movie to start and finish shooting amid the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Directed by Ranjit M Tewari, the spy thriller film stars Akshay Kumar with Vaani Kapoor, Lara Dutta and Huma Qureshi. The film is scheduled to be released on 2 April 2021 and promises a slick narrative, great action and never-seen-before locations in Scotland and London. The espionage thriller recreates the eighties and its teasers have excited viewers with its note perfect detailing and retro vibe.
*Bachchan Pandey:* This Sajid Nadiadwala production is directed by Farhad Samji and stars Akshay Kumar, Kriti Sanon and Jacqueline Fernandez in lead roles. The film is about a dreaded gangster who aspires to be an actor and is scheduled to be released on 22 January 2021.
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*83:* This Kabir Khan directorial is jointly produced by Khan, Vishnu Vardhan Induri, Deepika Padukone and Sajid Nadiadwala. The period film captures the heady days in 1983 when cricket allrounder and skipper Kapil Dev along with his “devils” won the first World-Cup for India. Ranveer Singh plays Kapil Dev, while Deepika Padukone, Tahir Raj Bhasin, Saqib Saleem, Harrdy Sandhu, Ammy Virk, Jiiva, Pankaj Tripathi, Boman Irani, Nishant Dahiya, Sahil Khattar and Amrita Puri make up the rest of the cast. The film is seeking a tentative release in March 2021.
*Brahmāstra:* Produced by Karan Johar , Brahmāstra is a lavishly made fantasy film written and directed by Ayan Mukerji. It stars Amitabh Bachchan, Ranbir Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Mouni Roy and Nagarjuna Akkineni in pivotal roles and will serve as the first film in a planned trilogy. The film is scheduled for release in standard formats, 3D, and IMAX though the release date has not yet been specified .
*Jersey:* This sports drama is directed by Gowtam Tinnanuri, produced by Aman Gill and Dil Raju and is a remake of the 2019 Telugu film of the same title. It stars Shahid Kapoor as a cricketer with an ensemble cast comprising Mrunal Thakur, Pankaj Kapur and others. The release date of the film has not yet been specified.
*Laal Singh Chaddha:* This adaptation of the 1994 film ‘Forrest Gump,’ is a comedy-drama directed by Advait Chandan and is helmed by Aamir Khan Productions and Viacom18 Studios. The film stars Aamir Khan in the titular role with Kareena Kapoor as his romantic lead, Vijay Sethupathi in his Hindi film debut and Mona Singh in a pivotal character. The film was in the news for having been filmed in more than 100 Indian locations and is scheduled for release during Christmas 2021.
*Rashmi Rocket:* This sports drama film is directed by Akarsh Khurana and produced by Ronnie Screwvala, Neha Anand and Pranjal Khandhdiya. The film features Taapsee Pannu in the lead role, alongside Priyanshu Painyuli and Abhishek Banerjee. The film traces the trials and tribulations and ultimate triumph of a female athlete. Taapsee Pannu is reportedly training hard to play the role convincingly. The release date of the film has not yet been specified.
*Maidaan:* This biographical, period film captures the golden years of Indian football from 1952–62. It stars Ajay Devgn as football coach Syed Abdul Rahim who changed the fortunes of the Indian team. Directed by Amit Sharma, the film is produced by Zee Studios in collaboration with Bayview Projects LLP. The film releases worldwide in cinemas on Dussehra 2021, in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam languages, and is Devgn’s first pan India acting initiative.
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*Sooryavanshi:* This action entertainer directed by Rohit Shetty is produced by Shetty himself in association with Hiroo Yash Johar, Aruna Bhatia, Karan Johar and Apoorva Mehta. It features Akshay Kumar as the titular character opposite Katrina Kaif. Gulshan Grover, Abhimanyu Singh, Niharica Raizada, Jackie Shroff, Sikandar Kher, Nikitin Dheer, Vivan Bhatena and Javed Jaffrey play supporting roles, while Ajay Devgn and Ranveer Singh make a special appearance.
Initially releasing on 24 March 2020, Sooryavanshi was postponed due to COVID-19 and will now possibly be screened in the first quarter of 2021.
*Atrangi Re:* This romantic drama directed by Aanand L. Rai, stars Sara Ali Khan in a double role opposite Akshay Kumar and Dhanush. Produced by T-Series, Colour Yellow Productions and Cape of Good Films, ‘Atrangi Re‘ will celebrate Rai’s distinctive and earthy storytelling, realistic locations and witty writing. It will be theatrically released worldwide on 14 February 2021, coinciding with Valentine’s Day.
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