It was Akshay Kumar who started it all, and guess it would be Akshay Kumar himself who will put a pause on it all!
When Airlift turned out to be a Superhit early this year and the first realistic drama (with a dash of biopic) to actually enter the 100 crore club, it seemed like there was some good future for the genre at all. Neerja followed it up with a 75 crore+ achievement at the Box Office and suddenly, ‘biopic’ was the buzz word for Bollywood. While many in the industry started announcing biopics (of people known or unknown), the success of Kapoor & Sons started making many believe that realistic cinema was in.
Until the release of Azhar, Sarbjit and Veerappan!
Each of the three films boasts of varied merits and box office performance. Azhar is the most puzzling of them all. One of the very few real life stories which had the blessings, guidance and unconditional support of the subject matter himself, the film saw good response from critics who mattered. Those who saw the film liked it as well (well, with comments ranging from theek-thaak to good) and no one dismissed it per se. Still, the film didn’t work.
Sarbjit just didn’t open well and though the ‘man of the film’ had made headlines till few years back, a large section of audience somehow chose to ignore his story on screen. Well, the common thought was – ‘Sarbjit didn’t really end up living while his family too didn’t really find any kind of a win, so what was the point around making the film after all’.
Ifs and buts of course, but the fact remains that the biopic genre saw a dent with the Aishwarya Rai Bachchan starrer. Ditto for Veerappan which could have made for a gritty real life story. Ram Gopal Varma got good reviews too but audience seems to be selective about giving it a dekko.
No wonder, it is Akshay Kumar himself who is now set to brighten up the affair at the Box Office. He is bringing on Housefull 3 which is as removed from reality as Sylvester Stallone’s Jurassic world is from Schindler’s List. In an out and out slapstick zone, he is willing to laugh at himself (and at others), only to bring on a quintessential family entertainer that doesn’t take itself seriously at all.
Unabashed entertainment is what Housefull 3 promises and for audiences, who have been fed with far too many realistic films since the release of Akshay’s own Airlift, there is some respite this summer with the riotous stage setting that the Sajid Nadiadwala production promises.
While Akshay himself would return with another realistic crime drama Rustom in a couple of months from now, guess the floodgates would open again for such tales in Bollywood. After all, there is a lot riding on M.S. Dhoni [September]. And then who knows, may be a relatively smaller Raman Raghav 2.0 manages to chip in as well!