In the first month of this year one saw the release of a Telugu film titled ‘Khaidi No 150’ starring the biggest superstar of the industry, Konidela Sivasankara Varaprasada famous as Chiranjeevi. Called the Boss by his adoring fans Chiranjeevi is making a comeback of sorts with this film as it comes a good decade after his last film Shankerdada Zindabad. And that film received a lukewarm response from the paying public. Predictably, even before it released, naysayers were quick to announce it’s demise owing to the superstar devoting more time to his political career in the interim. They were all proven wrong as Khaidi no 150 (named so also as it is #Chiranjeevi’s 150th film) broke all existing records at the box office falling just short of that behemoth called Bahubali. In a industry where ‘out of sight is out of mind’ applies to the biggest of them, it is incredible how #TheBoss has managed to keep his fanbase intact.
For the longest time, Malayalam cinema has led from the front when it comes to original cinema rooted in the culture and ethos unique to Kerala with great filmmakers like Bharatan, #AdoorGopalkrishnan, Ramu Kariat & Sethumadhavan just to name a few. Though formulaic commercial films do not rule the roost in the Kerala industry as much as it’s neighbouring Tamil & Telugu industries there are still some actors whose films are more eagerly awaited than the others. In fact for the longest time (over two decades) Malayalam films have been a two legged race with superstars #Mohanlal and #Mammooty currying favor with the masses and classes alike. In fact be it commercial, middle of the road or even art films both these actors have done it all, encompassing in their respective careers all possible genres of cinema. And in the year 2017 they are not doing too badly for themselves either. Mohanlal’s latest film #Pulimurugan has turned out to be the first #MalayalamFilm to gross a hundred crores at the box office. And this man has done over three hundred odd movies (320 at last count)
Artists from the film industry in #TamilNadu have always enjoyed demi god status among the masses. And not surprisingly some of the tallest politicians of the state have almost all had a glorious first innings as leading actors, actresses and writers. Be it the late MG Ramachandran (MGR) or the recently deceased ‘Amma’ J.Jayalalitha their onscreen persona has had a direct bearing on how they get perceived in real life as well. For the last few decades much like in Kerala, Tamil cinema has come to be known by it’s two marquee stars, #Rajnikanth and #KamalHassan. Interestingly enough inspite to enjoying great popularity among the people at large both have been reluctant to step into politics. Fans of the former have tried to interpret signs in each film of the superstar as proof that Rajni will join politics, but no avail. Rajnikanth whose last film #Kabali is said to have been underwhelmed at the box office yet ended up grossing over 200 crores is perhaps happy doing what he knows best. Wowing the masses.
In the commercial land of Bollywood it is all about numbers. Did the film gross 100 crores? Or was it 200 crores or even 300? At the end of the day, it all boils down to how much a movie can make over the weekend? Not as much about quality of the product itself and considering that box office can be a very fickle item on the menu for an actor,it is quite fascinating to see three actors stand tall for what is a good 25 years now. They are the #KhanTriumvirate of Aamir, Salman and Shahrukh (in order of appearance on the big screen) Call it charm, chutzpah, choice of film or mere talent these three actors have been part of all the most successful films that have ever got made. With all three being a huge draw worldwide, films starring these actors have the potential to make moolah like never before. And they are. Like Aamir’s #P.K. which made a staggering 800 crores worldwide.
And as we mention all these huge stars, how can one forget the biggest of them all, Big B? The evergreen Amitabh Bachchan missed the National Award by a proverbial whisker for his epic performance in the seminal film ‘Pink’ And he is just 75.