Christmas is the time for the big boys of Bollywood to play. Look at the last seven years’ releases and you’ll see what we mean. The two big Khans — Aamir and Shah Rukh — have dominated that slot, with the only other big name being Akshay Kumar. Aamir is apparently so fond of that season that one knew Dhoom:3 would release during Christmas even before the official announcement.
But now, the bigwigs have a challenger. And who better than next-gen Bollywood’s biggest star — Ranbir Kapoor — to join the Christmas party? Having already proven his mettle at the box office with Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (YJHD beat Salman’s latest release, Dabangg 2, with its opening-weekend collections), his upcoming project, Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet (BV), will release during Christmas 2014.
Vikas Bahl of Phantom Films (co-producers of BV) confirms that the "film will be ready around that time. So it makes sense to come out with it then." Is Ranbir stepping into the big guys’ territory? "We don’t look at it that way, but with him at the helm, I think we can play on the front foot," says Vikas, adding, "BV is an over-the-top film with lots of drama and music. It’s a good fit for the festive period."
"Besides Ranbir, the producers and director must also have been involved in the decision. Nonetheless, it goes on to show that he inspires huge confidence in producers," says a trade insider. Trade expert Taran Adarsh adds, "Look at YJHD. Ranbir is a star and he has the wherewithal to be a major box-office draw at any given point."
Christmas at the B-o
2007: Aamir Khan: Taare Zameen Par; Akshay Kumar: Welcome
2008: Aamir Khan: Ghajini
2009: Aamir Khan: 3 Idiots
2010: Akshay Kumar: Tees Maar Khan
2011: Shah Rukh Khan: Don 2
2012: Salman Khan: Dabangg 2
2013: Aamir Khan: Dhoom:3 (upcoming)
Family get-together on the big screen
June 11 will mark a reunion of sorts for Ranbir Kapoor and his parents, Rishi and Neetu on a film set. The next schedule of Abhinav Singh Kashyap’s Besharam (to release in October) starts in Mumbai on June 11 and will feature the three Kapoors.
“In fact, unit members have decided to host a small party to mark the start of the schedule and the Kapoors shooting together,” says an insider from the unit.
The shoot will take place in and around Byculla. Although earlier, the trio shot together in Chandigarh for the same film, this is their first extended shoot schedule in Mumbai.
Rishi and Neetu play police officers, while Ranbir plays a thief in Abhinav’s second venture after Dabangg (2010).
Ranbir Kapoor shakes up Khan hegemony
Ranbir Kapoor began his career with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Saawariya in November 2007. The fairy tale did not earn much but it brought the audience to theatres by the droves. With expectation from Raj Kapoor's grandson, it opened to packed theatres and grossed around Rs 20 crore in its opening weekend.