News About 3 Upcoming Movies: Naseerji’s Son Gets His Launch, Swara Bhaskar Gets a Lead Role, and Yashji Gets a Remake

Well, everyone has decided that the duldrums of February is the time to promote their films, and the duldrums of March is the time to release them.  It’s an interesting sign of the state of the industry that I find  the piddling little early spring releases much more interesting than the big deal winter ones.

As I am sure we all know, Holi through Republic Day is generally the “good” season for releases.  Or, if it is a summer Eid (as it has been for the past several years), Eid through Republic Day.  And then after Republic Day, there is usually one semi-big release at Valentine’s Day, and otherwise the schedule is pretty empty.

Empty of major releases, that is.  Filled up with smaller films that wouldn’t be able to find screens during the time when bigger films are crowding every screen in India.  And today, probably because the Valentine’s films just came out so there isn’t much else in the news, everyone decided it was perfect time to start promoting some of those smaller films.

The one that is actually coming out soon is Anarkali of Aarah, featuring Swara Bhaskar.  Who was one of the best parts of Aurangzeb and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, but hasn’t gotten her own big film built around her.  And it looks like it was a bit of a slog to get this one.  I found an interview with Swara from December of 2015 talking about it, which means it must have been waiting for release for at least a year.  First time director/writer, which I am sure made it even harder.  And it sounds like a very unconventional story.  Swara plays a village singer who specializes in clever sexy songs.  Which is interesting in itself, we have all these movies in which we have a random stranger leading the songs at a mehndi party about the first night and all, and I always wonder who that person is!

(Like Sonali here!)

Anyway, the plot involves Swara running afoul of a local big wig and how she fights back.  Oh, and she looks gorgeous on the poster!  And Karan is promoting it, which presumably means Dharma bought up the rights, and that it will get a decent release and marketing campaign, and so hopefully reach a decent-sized audience.

 

Swara’s film is coming out soon, there is another film that just started filming today and presumably won’t be coming out for a looooooooooooong time.  But the production of it is fascinating!  Red Chillies and BR Chopra Films and Dharma are teaming up to remake Ittefaq, starring Siddharth and Sonakshi and directed by BR Chopra’s grandson in his first directing job.

So many things to unpack behind the scenes!  Firstly, notice the wording of Shahrukh’s tweet:

He identifies Ittefaq as a “Yashji” film.  Which it was, directed by Yash Chopra.  But produced, and the rights owned, by BR Chopra.  Which is a whoooooooooole thing.  And now BR’s grandson gets to make the remake, instead of Yashji’s son.

However, as I will get into in the last part of my Hindi Film 101 on the Chopras, “BR Films” might now be owned or at least supervised by Yash Raj films now.  A few years back, they went bankrupt and Adi came in to rescue them.  Not sure what the terms of the deal were by which he took charge.

Speaking of family stuff, Abhay Chopra I think is the Chopra who was Ranbir’s best friend in childhood.  Which makes me wonder if that is part of the Dharma involvement here, that Ranbir brought in his good friend Karan to meet with his friend Abhay.  And Karan brought in Siddharth (obviously).  And then Karan brought in Red Chillies.

Or else Adi is coordinating this whole thing?  Frankly, that might make the most sense of all to me.  That Adi took over BR Films, looked through their back catalog, picked out the most promising property for a remake, and then brought in Karan and Shahrukh to kind of handhold his cousin in making it, so that Abhay would gain the experience and success that would let him get BR Films back out of the red.

Oh, and I think the casting is brilliant, Ittefaq the original was memorable for taking a chocolate hero type Rajesh Khanna and a cheery heroine type Nanda and making them into something completely opposite the audience expectations.  Siddharth and Sonakshi’s casting gives that same potential to the remake.

Image result for ittefaq

 

And the final film which got it’s first look promo today is Laali Ki Shaadi Mein Laddoo Deewana, starring Vivaan Shah and Akshara Haasan.  Or, as they are better known, “Naseeruddin Shah’s son and Kamal Haasan’s daughter.”  I haven’t seen Shamitabh, Akshara’s only previous film, but I did enjoy Vivaan in both Happy New Year and Bombay Velvet (one of the few parts of Bombay Velvet I did enjoy).

Image result for laali and ladoo vivaan teaser

I hope this film turns out well, because I want good things for Vivaan.  But I am a little nervous because, like Anarkaali, the only news I can find about it is from way way back in 2015 when it was supposed to have a summer 2016 release.  So either they decided it couldn’t handle the competition of a summer release and they want to dump it in the spring duldrums.  Or there were so many issues, that they have been fixing it in post-production and reshoots for a year.  Either way, not good.

 

But in general, these three films, plus Anushka’s Phillauri which is also a lower budget no big names film coming in March, and Running Shaadi which I just saw and LOVED, are so much more interesting to me than the same old big releases.  They seem more focused on telling a story about characters, and a story that is distinctly Indian instead of glossy and international.

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16 thoughts on “News About 3 Upcoming Movies: Naseerji’s Son Gets His Launch, Swara Bhaskar Gets a Lead Role, and Yashji Gets a Remake

  1. Did you see the news that the Jagga Jasoos team is contemplating a delay from April 7th. Apparently they don’t want to release the movie during exams time or something. I don’t think delaying the movie again will bring them any benefit; the only thing it will do is give the movie negative publicity.

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    • Oh man, poor Jagga Jasoos! I have a very bad feeling about that movie. Too much money for a first time producer (Ranbir) to be dealing with, the release marketing is going to be a nightmare (even if Ranbir and Kat can be in the same room, all of the stories will be about their relationship, not the film), and based on the first look teaser, it seems to be in an awkward place of too childish for adults to like but too old-fashioned in style for kids to really enjoy. Reminded me of the Tin-Tin movie, which of course flopped terribly.

      Also, April is really going to be Bahubaali’s month. Maybe something totally different, like a clever rom-com, could still do well. But Jagga Jasoos looks like it is going to be a family film with special effects. So probably a good idea to move it to somewhere else. But I wonder where they will put it?

      On Mon, Feb 20, 2017 at 11:51 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • It’s so funny that you compared Jagga Jasoos to Tin-Tin! My wife wondered if it was a Hindi remake when I first showed her the trailer. My kids have also watched the trailer about 100 times and seem very intrigued and excited by it. I’ll probably take them to the theater to see it on the big screen (whenever it ends up releasing).

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      • Exactly, it would be a risk to get any closer to Baahubali than it already is. Maybe they could postpone by another week and have only two open weeks before Baahubali but I think that’s kind of pointless. I don’t think May is that good of a release time either. I mean, I don’t think Jagga Jasoos will have many screens or public interest if they come out after Baahubali. Jagga Jasoos will probably have to wait for the end of may or beginning of June to have a good release period if they decide to postpone.

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        • Ooo, that’s tight! I just checked, and Eid has crawled back to the end of June this year. Which means Tubelight will probably come out that weekend, which would be Friday June 23rd. And it also means an end of May/beginning of June release lands at Ramadan, which isn’t a great time if you want large audience penetration, especially globally. And then the beginning of July is out, because that would still be Tubelight. So they would be looking at sliding in at the end of July, before the big Independence Day releases. Because Jagga Jasoos doesn’t really look like an Independence Day film, does it? Not patriotic enough.

          Or, they could just throw in the towel and grab Gandhi’s birthday in early October. I don’t think any other film has taken it yet, and that might be a good date for a family movie. Plus, they filmed in South Africa! So it’s thematic!

          On Mon, Feb 20, 2017 at 3:43 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I read somewhere that they want a seven month gap between Jagga Jasoos and the Dutt biopic which is supposed to be coming out for Christmas. Even if they can’t get seven months, I’m sure they would prefer releasing the movie by July at the latest.

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          • A seven month gap? That’s stupid! I am a firm proponent of the “build momentum” release theory. If Jagga is a hit, then follow it up ASAP with another Ranbir hit. Especially one in a different genre, let his audience expand.

            On the other hand, if they think Jagga might be terrible, then this makes sense. Because people would definitely stay away from the next Ranbir film if the last one was a stinker.

            On Mon, Feb 20, 2017 at 4:03 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I feel like the makers are not very confident about Jagga Jasoos. Why else would they want to postpone the movie at the last minute? Now even if they don’t postpone, April 7th will have Sarkar 3, Jagga Jasoos, Laali Ki Shaadi Mein Laddoo Deewana coming out. Even though Jagga Jasoos is the bigger film, it still won’t have a solo release.

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          • Yeah, a last minute postponement never looks good. Especially when the marketing train has already left the station.

            On Mon, Feb 20, 2017 at 4:27 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. There were rumors that Shahrukh wanted to cast Varun for Ittefaq but that he rejected it and then they went to Sidharth.

    Also, it kind of sucks that Anarkali of Aarah and Phillauri are both clashing with each other.

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    • Yeah, they look so similar! Not just because they are both female lead films, but they are both kind of village stories, with humorous plots, and not a real romance focus. They could turn out to be totally different in the end result, but the marketing campaign certainly looks the same, which is all that matters for opening weekend. They will be splitting the same audience.

      On Mon, Feb 20, 2017 at 4:31 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. I wish Siddharth wasn’t cast in Ittefaq in Rajesh Khanna’s place. There has to be a push-pull relationship with some chemistry between the prisoner and the housewife.Varun has proved with Badlapur that he can handle such a complex character.This is a bit more than Siddharth can handle.He usually gives his best in a two-hero film.No doubt that Sonakshi will give a fine performance.Maybe she’ll be so brilliant as to carry the film on her shoulders.But what with her last two films being flops, that’s putting too much pressure on her.I loved Swara Bhaskar to bits in Nil Battey Sannata where she played the lead for the first time.But Anarkali must be the first movie where she has the chance to showcase her glamorous side.Love the friendship between her and Sonam.Especially the way she supported Sonam during a recent award function when the latter tried to give all the credit of Neerja to her director.I hope this friendship survives.

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    • Based on almost nothing, I feel like Sonam would be a really good female friend. She seems like someone who would give you great advice about your career or your personal life or your fashion, and then support and defend you no matter what you decided to do. I also feel like (again based on almost nothing), she probably is a lot less interested in male-female friendships. Not one of those “one of the boys” kinds of women. Which is interesting in terms of the power base she is building in the industry, it kind of seems like she is building a network of close friends and creative collaborators that are all female instead of working on building connections to the existing male power structure.

      On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 10:12 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. Pingback: Hindi Film 101: The Chopras Part 2, Yash Raj Films and The Mahabharata – dontcallitbollywood

  5. Pingback: Two New Trailers! Two Strong Woman – dontcallitbollywood

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