While we all love to see our favourite stars coming out of a burning building-absolutely unscratched, after fighting off 20 villains at one time and driving cars without a care for their lives in action-packed theatricals; it is always nice to watch a film every now and then that is free of all this jazz and gives us a little taste into someone’s life, wouldn’t you agree though? From classic films such as Malcolm X, Catch Me If You Can, The Social Network, The Imitation Game, Milk, Neerja, Soorma, Mary Kom, and Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, to underrated but phenomenal films such as Manjhi - The Mountain Man and Paan Singh Tomar, time and again, our filmmakers have been taking the biographical route of movie making and the results have been more than amazing.
This year alone, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit us all hard, Bollywood saw two major releases which were “inspired” or “based on true story” of actual people - Ajay Devgn’s 100th film in Hindi cinema, Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior and Deepika Padukone’s much anticipated, Chhapaak. While Tanhaji emerged as one of the greatest hits of Ajay’s career, Chhapaak failed to leave its mark at the box office.
The bigger question remains - "what is it about biopics that continue to pull crowds to the theatres?" Maybe it’s the idea of seeing history unfold in front of your eyes and witnessing the stories you have been hearing since childhood on the big screen or maybe for the dose of inspiration, they fuel into you while you watch how great men became what they were famous for; or it’s just the fascination of seeing your favourite stars breaking a mould and stepping into someone else’s shoes. We mean, how can you resist a story about a Bihar-based teacher, who teaches people from not so humble backgrounds to get them into the best engineering colleges of India, where the native Bihari teacher is played by the Greek god of Bollywood, Hrithik Roshan himself! Too hard to resist, isn’t it? (PS: we would all like a teacher like Hrithik).
Well, whatever the reason might be, Bollywood and Hollywood - both continue to mint on the evergreen idea of making movies that are inspired by real-life events and people. The proof being the long queue of movies lined up for releases in the future with - newbie Janhvi Kapoor starrer, Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl, Ranveer Singh’s ‘83, Kangana Ranaut’s much anticipated Thalaivi, Shoojit Sircar directorial Sardar Udham Singh, Prithiviraj, Saina and Shershaah - to name a few.
Even in Hollywood, after mega successes of movies such as Bohemian Rhapsody, Judy and Rocketman, we’d soon see Jennifer Hudson starring in Respect - based on the life story of American soul singer Aretha Franklin, a film based on The King of Rock, Elvis Presley and the likes of Bob Marley and John Lennon.
So, the rage of biopics isn’t seeing an end anytime soon and we can’t wait to watch them all!