So, everyone calls the FilmFares “India’s Oscars.” But they’re not, really. They are awards given by a filmi magazine to people who they want to feature in their magazine, or otherwise make nice with. And they are given to people who still care about being featured in a filmi magazine and will show up to the awards ceremony. So it is a popularity/power contest on one hand, and a test of your commitment to nurturing your career on the other.
Which is why I am hoping I can actually predict at least one winner! (Last year, I won a “special” award from my class as the only person who managed to predict every single Oscar category wrong. I am terrible with Hollywood, except in very certain areas. But maybe the FilmFare’s will be my game!)
So, the nominees are! my predictions in italics
Tanu Weds Manu Returns
This category really depends on how Salman’s court case is going. If he is doing well enough that he isn’t toxic, but poorly enough that he is willing to attend the FilmFares, they will give it to Bajrangi Bhaijaan. Which I actually think should win best Film, because it was an overall better picture than all of these. Especially Bajirao (read my lengthy reasons why here). But if Salman isn’t up for it, it is going to Bajirao. Fancy enough to bring in the satellite TV viewership numbers from overseas, popular enough to get a big name back home to do a dance number. And Ranveer and Deepika would definitely be willing to attend. Priyanka, maybe, as I pointed out the Indian press is just beginning to turn on her for being too America focused. If it gets worse, attending and performing at the FilmFares would be a good counter move.
Aanand L Rai – Tanu Weds Manu Returns
Kabir Khan – Bajrangi Bhaijaan
Meghna Gulzar – Talvar
Sanjay Leela Bhansali – Bajirao Mastani
Shoojit Sircar – Piku
Sriram Raghavan – Badlapur
Again, it’s going to be Bajrangi or Bajirao. Whichever loses for Best Picture, probably. Bajrangi, to keep Salman happy. Bajirao, to keep the SLB fans happy, since it is the most aggressively Directed film of the year. And he is the most aggressive “Great Director”.
Best Actor in a Leading Role (Male)
Amitabh Bachchan – Piku
Ranbir Kapoor – Tamasha
Ranveer Singh – Bajirao Mastani
Salman Khan – Bajrangi Bhaijaan
Shah Rukh Khan – Dilwale
Varun Dhawan – Badlapur
It’s Shahfukh’s if he wants it, but he may not. He’s been drifting away from the FilmFare’s lately, and from that whole game in general. But if he so much as lifts a finger to indicate a willingness to perform (or even host!), he’s getting this award. Salman, maybe, but he is less likely to show up for an award for himself than he would be for one for his picture. Otherwise, it’s between Amitabh and Ranbir. Maybe Amitabh, just so they can see if Rekha and Jaya will talk to each other again. Maybe Ranbir, just so they can try to get the first public appearance with Kat.
Best Actor in a Leading Role (Female)
Anushka Sharma – NH10
Deepika Padukone – Bajirao Mastani
Deepika Padukone – Piku
Kajol – Dilwale
Kangana Ranaut – Tanu Weds Manu Returns
Sonam Kapoor – Dolly Ki Doli
Kajol’s if she wants it, otherwise Dips. Kangana just hasn’t been around enough, on red carpets and at parties. She doesn’t have an exciting boyfriend (unless you believe the Ajay rumors) or anything like that. Dips, she brings it hard to these public events, the clothes, the PDA with Ranveer, the whole deal. She clearly cares about playing the industry game and plays it well. Anushka, that is a nice acknowledgement not of her acting in NH10 (although I have heard it was excellent), but of her producing it. A little nod to her growing power in the industry (which is also shown by her recent casting coup), but they aren’t going to actually give her the award. And Sonam, that’s just so she’ll come to the ceremony and wear something fabulous. My biggest, guaranteed, prediction is that there will be a bunch of clickbait “Kajol versus Kangana” headlines over the next few weeks, and everyone will try to get a photo of them interacting at the ceremony. Which might be enough of a reason for neither of them to attend.
Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Male)
Anil Kapoor – Dil Dhadakne Do
Deepak Dobriyal – Tanu Weds Manu Returns
Jimmy Sheirgill – Tanu Weds Manu Returns
Nawazuddin Siddiqui – Badlapur
Sanjay Mishra – Masaan
Anil Kapoor! Give it to Anil Kapoor! But, they won’t. They just want him to come to the ceremony and dance in the aisle and make everyone happy. I’m guessing it will be Nawazuddin Siddiqui, a recognition of his rising talent, and a nod to his Bajrangi Bhaijaan role without giving BB yet another nomination.
Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Female)
Anushka Sharma – Dil Dhadakne Do
Huma Qureshi – Badlapur
Priyanka Chopra – Bajirao Mastani
Shefali Shah – Dil Dhadakne Do
Tabu – Drishyam
Tanvi Azmi – Bajirao Mastani
Priyanka if she is willing to show up. Otherwise, it’s wide open. Tabu, if she is willing to do a dance and make a big deal about it, but she usually isn’t. Anushka already has two nominations, they don’t need to butter her up any more than that. So this one could actually be decided on merit! In that case, I nominate Shefali Shah. Because she was amazing.
Ankit Tiwari, Meet Bros. Anjjan and Amaal Mallik – Roy
Anupam Roy – Piku
AR Rahman – Tamasha
Pritam – Dilwale
Sanjay Leela Bhansali – Bajirao Mastani
Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy – Dil Dhadakne Do
This is a good one to give to Dilwale. Pritam is always a crowd favorite, and the soundtrack was legitimately solid. And Shahrukh would be touched by them honoring a collaborator’s work. Otherwise, this is kind of a clean-up category, whoever didn’t get honored enough in the other ones. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy to suck up to the Akhtar’s and the Excel production house, SLB if he didn’t win anything else, etc. Or, it could go to Roy, which actually had the soundtrack of the year, which would make the viewers happy.
Amitabh Bhattacharya – ‘Gerua’ (Dilwale)
Anvita Dutt – ‘Gulabo‘ (Shaandaar)
Gulzar – ‘Zinda‘ (Talvar)
Irshad Kamil – ‘Agar Tum Saath Ho‘ (Tamasha)
Kumaar – ‘Sooraj Dooba‘ (Roy)
Varun Grover – ‘Moh Moh Ke Dhaage‘ (Dum Laga Ke Haisha)
No Javed Akhtar this year, so it’s anyone’s game. Not that he always has to win, just that if he is nominating, it’s a big deal not to give it to him. Gulzar is usually a safe bet as well, but he’s won so many of these, maybe they will figure he just doesn’t care any more. I think this might be the suck-up to Yash Raj category, and give it to Dum Laga Ke Haisha.
Best Playback Singer (Male)
Ankit Tiwari – ‘Tu Hai Ke Nahi‘ (Roy)
Arijit Singh – ‘Gerua‘ (Dilwale)
Arijit Singh – ‘Sooraj Dooba‘ (Roy)
Atif Aslam – ‘Jeena Jeena‘ (Badlapur)
Papon – ‘Moh Moh Ke Dhaage‘ (Dum Laga Ke Haisha)
Vishal Dadlani – ‘Gulabo‘ (Shaandaar)
Well, Arjit Singh’s got it by the numbers! But “Jeena Jeena” was a more popular song. I just really really can’t believe they didn’t nominate Kumar Sanu for “Tu”. There has got to be a story there. What did he do to FilmFare?
Best Playback Singer (Female)
Alka Yagnik – ‘Agar Tum Saath Ho‘ (Tamasha)
Anusha Mani – ‘Gulabo‘ (Shaandaar)
Monali Thakur – ‘Moh Moh Ke Dhaage‘ (Dum Laga Ke Haisha)
Palak Mucchal – ‘Prem Ratan Dhan Paayo‘ (Prem Ratan Dhan Payo)
Priya Saraiya – ‘Sunn Sathiya‘ (ABCD 2)
Shreya Ghoshal – ‘Deewani Mastani‘ (Bajirao Mastani)
Shreya Ghoshal. I’m sticking with that. She’s pretty, she’s a known name, she’ll perform live at the ceremony if they ask her. And it was a really showy song.
So, let’s see how I do! I’m shooting for either spectacularly wrong or spectacularly right. No middle ground! (of course, I also hedged my bets by picking several for each category)
Also, the most realistic view of the FilmFare Awards ceremony you will ever get: