It has been one positive year in Bollywood industry when biopics and period movies vied for
attention with the genre of films popularised by B-town’s newest sensation Ayushmann Khurrana. From Manikarnika to Bala, there were movies of different tastes to entertain cine-goers this year. Supriyo Hazra looks back how the year was for every tinsel town A-lister
Akshay Kumar: There is a certain formula to make movies successful and Akshay Kumar surely knows them all. His diversity as an actor could be seen specifically in 2019 when he delivered films like Kesari, which was a movie based on patriotism, and Mission Mangal, or a completely different genre of comedy with Housefull 4. He ended the year by pairing up with Kareena Kapoor Khan for Good Newwz. Overall, one can say that Akshay promised to win hearts in 2019 with all these major releases. He has already unveiled his looks from upcoming release Sooryavanshi and Laxmmi Bomb. Both of them promise to be two major bombs to be dropped by Khiladi Kumar next year. He recently announced that he has completed shooting for cop movie Sooryavanshi.
Amitabh Bachchan: Age may be slowing down the spirit of megastar Amitabh Bachchan and this became evident recently when he announced his thought of retiring from films to his fans through his personal blog. Yes, the announcement may have left millions of his fans across the globe shattered. But, they should not feel so much worried as Big B is currently busy shooting for his upcoming important projects like Brahmastra and Chehre and Gulabo Sitabo. So, it is time for us to sit back and cherish his next magical creations before that day finally arrives when he decides to hang his boots. This is also the year when he is receiving the 50th Dadasaheb Phalke Award.
Ayushmann Khurrana: If you argue that 2018 was his best then think again as Ayushmann Khurrana, Bollywood’s present poster boy, delivered it even bigger this year with three consecutive hits. The Ayushmann mania has been sweeping the Bollywood shores for the past couple of years and this time it started with the thriller Article 15. Then came Dream Girl, with its hidden soft message against the trouble of loneliness faced by people today. With his last release Bala, Ayushmann remained the hit maker of the year, creating probably a new formula for upcoming stars to follow in the coming days. Now, 2020 promises to be another Ayushmann Khurrana year when he will be seen in two major releases Gulabo Sitabo and Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan. Surely, these content driven movies, which Ayushmann specialises, can once again create certain magic and evetually establish this Chandigarh-born actor as the next biggest superstar.
Aamir Khan: After a poor show in 2018 with his Thugs of Hindostan, Aamir Khan did not appear on the big screen this year. He will be seen in 2020 with the movie Laal Singh Chaddha. He has already unveiled his first look from the film. In his Sikh-man avatar, Aamir Khan once again aims to deliver a hit next year.
Anushka Sharma: A controversy following a Farokh Engineer’s remarks against her might have ended the months on a sour note but Anushka and her heart-warming images with husband Virat Kohli from their various trips surely kept netizens busy across the months. However, away from her personal life, she was not seen in any Bollywood releasesin the past 12 months.
Ajay Devgn: Bollywood actor Ajay Devgn was seen romancing actress young Rakul Preet in the romantic comedy De De Pyar De early in the year. He will soon be seen in historical film Tanhaji-The Unsung next year. Ajay Devgn looks dominating in the first looks of the movie released.
Deepika Padukone: Deepika and Ranveer completed a year of togetherness in 2019 as they marked their first marriage anniversary. She might be away from the big screen in 2019 but in 2020 Deepika will come back with films like Chhapaak and 83. Both the films are crucial. In 83, Deepika is pairing up with Ranveer to play sports icon Kapil Dev’s wife Romi Bhatia’s character. Ranveer, of course, will play the character of Kapil. Away from the world of sports, Deepika will be seen playing the role of an acid attack victim in Chapaak. The Meghna Gulza directed movie is based on the life of acid attack survivor Laxmi Agarwal.
Hrithik Roshan: Hrithik Roshan was back in 2019 in his best possible form where picked up momentum to deliver hits with Super 30 and War. In Super 30, Hritik played the character of a teacher for the first time in his career. With beard and simpleton look, Hrithik was far away from the glamour icon he is known to play generally onscreen. War witnessed the much-awaited pairing up of Tiger Shroff and Hrithik together as they fought against each other in the action-thriller. Both emerged as Box Office hits.
Salman Khan: Bollywood’s super rockstar, known for delivering a hit year every year, was back in 2019 with ‘Bharat’. Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif have always united to create an onscreen magic and Bharat did not fail to deliver at the Box Office. The entertainer remained one of the biggest hits of the year. For Salman Khan, the promise to keep one hit every year remain unbreakable.
Jacqueline Fernandez: From her vlog to working in Bollywood movies, Jacqueline, the Sri Lankan diva of Bollywood, spent a busy 2019. She appeared in an item number in this year’s major release Saaho. Jacqueline and Sushant Singh Rajput’s Drive released online on Netflix but went mostly unnoticed.
Kareena Kapoor Khan: The gorgeous Indian celebrity ‘Bahu’ Kareena Kapoor Khan was back onscreen with comedy flick Good Newwz. She absolutely stunned her fans with her still youngish looking figure and dance moves, giving a perfect competition to her colleague in the movie Kiara Advani. Kareena will surely have a much busy 2020 with movies like Angrezi Medium and Laal Singh Chaddha on the line.
Katrina Kaif: Her 2018 movie Zero, which also featured Jab Tak Hai Jaan co-stars Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma, might not have performed dominantly as was expected, but 2019 saw ‘Cikni Chameli’ Katrina Kaif pair up with hit machine Salman Khan in Bharat. The movie released during Eid festivity and emerged as one of the biggest Box Office collectors of the passing year.
Kangana Ranaut: The gutsy Bollywood lady continued to make controversial remarks in between attending the swearing-in ceremony of Narendra Modi or attending his function on the Gandhi project. Her releases were two films. Judgementall Hai Kya got critical acclaim while Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi, co-directed by her, did well internationally.
Nawazuddin Siddiqui: Away from Bollywood, Nawazuddin Siddiqui earned accolades in the international arena playing Dilly Mahmood in British crime drama TV series McMafia. It won the best drama series award at the 47th International Emmy Awards. In Bollywood, he appeared in movies like Thackeray, Photograph and Housefull 4. Nawaz surely left his fans laugh their lungs out with his funny dance steps in a special song for Housefull 4. The song was a remake of popular Bollywood number ‘Bhoot Raja’. In this age of content-driven Bollywood movies, Nawaz also appeared in a lead role in comedy movie Motichoor Chaknachoor.
Ranveer Singh: Ranveer Singh only gets bigger and bigger. This year, he was seen giving life to the character of a Mumbai rapper Murad Ahmed in the movie Gully Boy. He even performed ‘Apna Time Ayega’ with such perfection that professional rap artists will get a run for their money. He was seen pairing up with Alia Bhatt in the movie, a first in their careers. The movie, which promises to remain evergreen for generations ahead, was even selected as India’s entry for the Best International Feature Film at the 92nd Academy Awards. In 2020, he will be seen playing onscreen Kapil Dev in 83. It will also feature his wife Deepika Padukone. Several images of the movie, with Ranveer in his Kapil avatar, have been released. He will also be seen in a movie named Jayeshbhai Jordaar where he will play the character of a Gujarati man. The first look of the movie is already out.
Priyanka Chopra: Finally, India’s international star Priyanka Chopra made her Bollywood comeback with the movie ‘The Sky Is Pink. Pairing opposite Farhan Akhtar, the film may not have emerged as a serious Bollywood box office money churner, but the storyline and of course her performance in the movie were appreciated. Away from the onscreen world, Priyanka, who recently completed her one year marriage anniversary with Nick Jonas, was named as the top star of Indian cinema and television series in 2019 in a list released by IMDb. In Hollywood, her film Isn’t It Romantic released amid mixed response from moviegoers. She had earlier appeared in Hollywood movie Baywatch in 2017.
Ranbir Kapoor: After delivering a major hit like Sanju in 2018, Ranbir Kapoor may not have appeared in any Bollywood movie this year but he was busy shooting for his 2020 releases like Shamshera and Brahmastra. In Brahmastra, he will seen sharing the screen space with Amitabh Bachchan and his lady love Alia Bhatt.
Shah Rukh Khan: Shah Rukh Khan did not appear on the Big Screen this year. He was last seen in 2018 movie Zero. The film had featured actors Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma, making a reunion for them ever since the release of the 2012 movie Jab Tak Hai Jaan.
Sunny Leone: Apart from appearing in several item numbers and music videos, Sunny once again made her comeback in Bollywood movies with the movie Arjun Patiala. However, the movie and Sunny grabbed headlines for a strange reason this time. In one of the scenes of the movie, Sunny gives her contact number to lead actor Diljit Dosanjh and it so happened that the number is an active one, in service, and belongs to one Puneet Agarwal of Delhi. Puneet was deluged by lewd calls since then. Puneet, 27, received 100 to 150 calls from random people every day. From obscene talk and people asking for video calls to verbal abuses, Puneet was subjected to all sorts of strange requests because people thought it was Sunny Leone’s phone number.
Sushant Singh Rajput: Sushant appeared thrice this year in movies like Sonchiriya, Chhichhore and Drive. However, his most successful movie remained Chhichhore. The friendship drama made it remarkably big at the Box Office and remained as one of the major success stories of the year.
Shahid Kapoor: From his chocolate lover boy image in 2007 release Jab We Met, Shahid has walked a long journey in Bollywood and this time Kabir Singh did the magic for the star. The crazy portrayal of a doctor, who is in love with intoxication and his beloved, played by Kiara Advani, surely earned the appreciation of youth in India. Infact, Kabir Singh, the character, has emerged as one of the most controversial in the Hindi film industry in recent times and dubbed utterly misogynistic. Shahid surely did not fail to deliver once again.
Mr. Bollywood of the Year
One movie, patriotism and Box Office glory, Vicky Kaushal and his iconic dialogue from the movie “How is The Josh” had emerged as the next big thing Bollywood generated in this nation at the beginning of the year. The film won hearts across the country. Uri surely gave Bollywood one strong start to the year and the momentum was eventually maintained as several hit films released and shined at the Box office in 2019.
Modi and Bollywood for Gandhi: In an unprecedented event, a chunk of Bollywood fraternity gathered at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s residence in Octber to promote Mahatma Gandhi’s ideologies on the occasion of the Father of the Nation’s 150th birth anniversary (which falls on Oct 2). In a two-minute video posted by Modi on Twitter, film personalities Aamir Khan, Alia Bhatt, Salman Khan, Kangana Ranaut, Ranbir Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor Ahuja, Vicky Kaushal and Shah Rukh Khan were seen reciting the quotable quotes of Mahatma Gandhi. Filmmaker Rajkumar Hirani, whose films were known for reintroducing Gandhi’s ideals as Gandhigiri in modern times, made the video. With hashtag #ChangeWithin, the Prime Minister said on Twitter, “The film fraternity comes together to pay tributes to Mahatma Gandhi! #ChangeWithin is an excellent effort, which will add momentum towards ensuring Gandhi Ji’s message reverberates far and wide. It will also inspire citizens to take up causes dear to Bapu.”
Kartik Aaryan: He is the new sensation of Bollywood and every girl seems to be eager to go on a date with him. Well Kartik Aaryan seems to be basking in his success with a huge follow of women fans now. He recently paired with Bhumi Pednekar and Ananya Panday for Pati Patni Aur Woh, a remake of the 1978 Hindi film of the same name.
Kriti Sanon: Kriti Sanon is fast emerging as the next big thing in the industry, In 2019, Kriti worked in five mega movies. Starting the year with Luka Chuppi, Kriti went ahead and worked in movies like Arjun Patiala, Housefull 4, Panipat and Kalank. While some did well and some did not, Kriti remained one bright spot in all the films. It can be easily said that in 2020, Kriti will continue her strong form in front of the camera.
Bhumi Pednekar: Giving Kriti a strong competition in experimenting with strong roles onscreen, Bhumi worked in multiple impressive movies this year with the best ones being seen in films like Sonchiriya, Saand Ki Aankh and then yearending Bala. Bhumi’s last release of the year was the comedy movie Pati Patni Aur Woh where she appeared onscreen with Kartik Aryan to tickle the funny bones of their fans.
Yami Gautam: She is more than just a pretty face of Bollywood. Yami delivered two major hits in the year- Uri: The Surgical Strikeand then Bala.
Rajkummar Rao: Rajkummar remained a bright spot in Bollywood for the past several years. He appeared in three movies in 2019- Made in China, Judgementall Hai Kya and Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga. (IBNS-TWF)