From Uri to Super 30, 2019 was the year Bollywood got a reality check
From Vicky Kaushal’s Uri: The Surgical Strike to Hrithik Roshan’s Super 30, 2019 was the year Bollywood got a reality check.Updated: Dec 24, 2019 17:08 IST
That films mirror reality and are a reflection of our society is a fact largely known. Well, Bollywood seems to have taken this a bit too seriously — at least by looking at the number of films based on or inspired by real-life tales that released in 2019, one can safely say so. And, viewers, too, are lapping up such stories.
Hrithik Roshan, who starred in Super 30, based on the life of mathematician Anand Kumar, shares, “What manifested the success that we see with Super 30 is the relentless effort that went into its making, by each department. It was the pursuit of excellence, without the aim on any prize, which made it so endearing.”
Arjun Kapoor starred in India’s Most Wanted and Panipat — the former is loosely based on the capture of Indian Mujahideen founder Yasin Bhatkal by an unlikely bunch of IB officers, and the latter showcased the events that happened during the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761. “This interest is more from the audience’s side; them wanting to watch real stories. Earlier, there was a lot of escapism that existed. Today, there’s a lot of inquisitiveness. We want to know how it must have happened, the fine details and get to the bottom of it,” explains Arjun.
Uri: The Surgical Strike, based on the surgical strikes conducted in 2016 by the Indian Army, against militant launch pads in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK), was the first real-life inspired film to release this year.
Filmmaker Aditya Dhar, who also won a National Award for the same, says the most crucial aspect of making such a film lies in accuracy. “From the guns, gears, helmets, night vision goggles, uniforms, badges, to the way they stand and salute, every detail was paid attention to. Every actor, including Vicky (Kaushal), had to go through a rigorous training, and there was a vast amount of research that went in,” shares Aditya.
Others in the list include The Accidental Prime Minister, Thackeray, Kesari, Mission Mangal, Saand Ki Aankh and The Sky Is Pink.
Director Shonali Bose helmed The Sky Is Pink that was based on the story of Aisha Chaudhary, who was born with an immune deficiency disorder and died at the age of 18. She says, “The Chaudhary family approached me with the story, and I wanted to tell it because death is something every person has to go through, but they live in denial. We must face up to it and take life by the horns and live each moment which is what the family did and that’s what I loved.”
Producer Monisha Advani who backed Batla House, inspired by the 2008 Batla House encounter case, opines that it is the voyeuristic curiosity to know the interpretation of a real incident that draws people to such stories.
Vivek Agnihotri’s conspiracy thriller, The Tashkent Files turned out to be a sleeper hit. The director feels the society is going through a transition and “people are sick of all those La La Land films and want something real to watch. Earlier they’d read books but now they are looking for such real films,” he shares.