Bio-pics are the flavour of 2021. Rights to remake real-life subjects are being lapped up faster than chai at a Dhaba in winter. Wading through the impossible list of bio-pics I’ve zeroed in on the ones that are likely to make a mark.
Pankaj Tripathi in Kaagaz: It tells the unbelievable but true story of a villager Lal Bihari (here re-named Bharat Lal) from Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh who is declared dead by the government and who spent 19 years proving he was alive. This time Pankaj Tripathi has given up on being the goon from UP. It’s a refreshing change to see him play the victim rather than perpetrator for a change. When I texted Pankaj to say his latest was bakwas he sportingly laughed and gently promised that Kaagaz will make up for it. I am sure this one will be a game-changer among bio-pics.
Alia Bhatt in Gangubai Kathiawadi: “Career changing” is how Alia’s performance in Sanjay Leela Bhansali directed biopic is being described. From her body language to her spoken language, she is transformed into this ballsy Madame of a brothel who makes men pee in their pants with one twitch of her eyebrow. How does this pintsized actress manage to be so spectacularly larger-than-life? Find out for yourself when the film release around May-June. Alia will remind you of Shabana Azmi in Godmother.
Ranveer Singh In '83: Unlike Pankaj or Alia who look nothing like the real-life characters, Ranveer Singh actually resembles cricketer Kapil Dev. Director Kabir Khan tells me Ranveer was so dedicated to becoming Kapil Dev on the screen that he actually spent optimum time with Kapil Paaji mastering his art craft and conversational style.
Taapsee Pannu in Shabaash Mithu: The story of the Indian women’s cricket team captain Mithali Raj will see Taapsee swinging the bat to hit the ball out of the park. She has learnt the game of cricket from scratch like she learnt hockey for Soorma. The level of dedication is so fierce that one fears Taapsee may give up acting and take up cricket as her primary profession.
R Madhavan In Rocketry: The Nambi Effect: The Tamil-Hindi superstar has completed 27 years as a leading man. Maddy is currently playing the veteran space scientist Nambi Narayanan in the bio-pic that Maddy directs. “Nambi Narayanan could build a rocket. I’ve learnt to construct a rocket from scratch,” says Maddy proudly. In 1994 Narayanan a space-research scientist at the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) had been falsely accused of espionage. Says Madhavan, “We are going into every aspect of Narayanan’s life without apology. There’s really no point in doing a bio-pic unless the complete truth is told.” The Nambi Narayanan biopic is being made simultaneously into Hindi, Tamil and English.
Image Source: Instagram/pankajtripathi/aliaabhatt/ranveersingh/taapsee/actormaddy, spotboye image archives
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