Be it Kangana Ranaut’s Kusum Sangwan in Tanu Weds Manu Returns, Randeep Hooda’s Laal Rang or Salman Khan playing a wrestler in an upcoming film, Haryana is soon catching everyone’s fancy in Bollywood.
Director Ali Abbas Zafar, who is working with Salman Khan in Sultan , says, “There is a demand for a story to have a certain socio-political environment. My film is based in Haryana because it is the wrestling capital of the country. The state has produced male and female wrestlers, who have represented India at international events. When I started writing the film, it automatically became the backdrop.”
Actor Randeep Hooda says, “Earlier the focus was on Punjab. Then it shifted to UP. Everywhere Bollywood goes they do their subjects to death. And now Haryana is alive and kicking. Let’s hope we don’t do that to death as well. There have been lot of songs too such as Kar Gayi Chull, these are Haryanvi songs. In the past Haryana has only been portrayed for Khap and honour killings, but it is now a very progressive state. It has a huge influence in all of North India.”
Fazilpuria, who’s the singer of Chull and is also from the state, says, “Yeh ek aisi language hai jisse kissi ne promote nahi ki thi. Sabko yeh language pasand hai. Yeh Hindi se zyada different nahi hai. Bas thoda time zyada lag gaya. Maine jitney bhi ab tak gaane kiye unme Haryanvi use hui hai. Acha hai, ab zyada Bollywood projects aa rahe hai aur Haryana ko focus mein laa rahe hai.”
Nitesh Tiwari, director of Dangal where Aamir Khan will be portraying the role of wrestler Mahavir Singh Phogat, says, “Since Phogat is from Haryana, the film we set the film in the state.” Phogat says he feels proud. “Khushi ki baat toh hai ki duniya ko pata lag raha hai. Logo ko pata chal raha ki Hindustan mein Haryana basta hai.”
Also speaking on the trend, film critic Omar Qureshi, says, “Cinema keeps going through periodic shifts, suddenly everybody wants to shoot in UK, New York, New Zealand but they keep coming back with stories of our own soil. South has beautiful locations that have been more or less exploited, like Kolkata, Delhi and Mumbai. Haryana is a new location and an upcoming state. It has developed tremendously. It has retained its culture. That adds a great allure. The language is quaint and cute.”