Bollywood catches election fever

With general elections just a month away, Kangana Ranaut-starrer Revolver Rani, Sonam Kapoor-starrer Battle for Bittora, Priyanka Chopra-starrer Madamji and more Bollywood films have politics as their central theme.

bollywood Updated: Mar 11, 2014 10:57 IST
Prashant Singh
Prashant Singh
Hindustan Times
Revolver Rani,Kangana Ranaut,Gulaab Gang

With the general elections coming up, politics is on everyone’s mind.

And with half a dozen films set against a political background, Bollywood seems geared to cash in on the general mood.

Political awareness has gone up

Madhuri Dixit’s Gulaab Gang, has already released at an opportune time. And Revolver Rani — a satirical love story set against a political backdrop — will soon see Kangana Ranaut playing a political leader.

Director Madhur Bhandarkar is also working on Madamji. Starring Priyanka Chopra, it’ll be based on the life of an item girl-turned-politician. Bhandarkar says, "Thanks to media penetration, the awareness levels about politics have gone up... It’s keenly followed in our country. So it has huge potential as movie subjects." from books

Also dealing with politics will be a yet-untitled Sonam Kapoor-starrer, based on author Anuja Chauhan’s Battle For Bittora. The book deals with a love story between two politicians who, despite being in love, are contesting against each other in the elections. Sonam’s father and the film’s producer, Anil Kapoor, is confident about it: "I feel the content of the book will make a fantastic film," he says.

Inspired by politicians

Anil’s character in Sanjay Gupta’s upcoming Mumbai Saga is reportedly influenced by Shiv Sena founder, the late Bal Thackeray. "It’s not inspired by a real-life figure," says Gupta.

Meanwhile, Jackky Bhagnani plays a young Prime Minister in Youngistaan. His character has been compared to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi; however, Jackky has clarified that he is "not portraying Rahul Gandhi".

Paresh Rawal, too, is set to play BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate, Narendra Modi, in a biopic.

Will it work?

Considering politics is a contentious issue, is it risky to make such films? Gupta says, "There have been films like New Delhi Times (1986) and Aandhi (1975), where it was weaved in beautifully. The audience just wants to see an interesting tale."

Trade expert Taran Adarsh adds, "Why should the expectations from a film based on politics be different from any other film? Remember Raajneeti (2010)? It did well commercially and critically."

Meanwhile, some actors don’t want anything to do with politics

Politics? not my cup of tea
As the election fever starts, these stars plead to keep them out of it
Even as the Lok Sabha ­elections are ­nearing, and political parties are trying to rope in Bollywood glamour to lure voters, not all stars are ­game for it.

A bevy of top Bollywood stars have recently come on record to make it loud and clear once and for all that they won’t be part of the great Indian political tamasha (spectacle), rumours ­notwithstanding.

For instance, Aamir Khan, otherwise known for his social activism, has once again made it clear that he won’t be associated with ­politics. Aamir said, "People enter politics because they want to serve the country and serve the people. There are many other ways of doing it."

Anil Kapoor has also slammed reports of him contesting the elections.

Then, there’s Madhuri Dixit-Nene who doesn’t even want to share her political views. She says, "Polling is secret.. let my views also remain a secret."

In the past, actors Govinda and Amitabh Bachchan called it quits after joining the bandwagon.

(Report by Medha Shri Dahiya)

First Published: Mar 11, 2014 10:26 IST