How Covid Affected Film Industry: An Amazing Comeback of Film Stars
Where the whole world has been occupied by the fear, panic, and uncertainty of this pandemic and every life aspect stands still, India’s Hindi film industry is seeing empty theatres, abandoned movie sets, and celebrities with blank calendars.
As per the official Covid statistics given by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, there have been more than 4,000,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in India alone. Considering the alarmingly high numbers, no wonder the country’s whole economy has been jolted during this pandemic.
As India tackles with one of the worst economic and financial downturns in its history, the Hindi film industry struggles to stay active. Where there have been releases online, unfortunately, there have been far too many delays, untimely deaths, and positive cases within the Bollywood circle that the industry would require a good enough time to emerge victorious by the time this year wraps up.
Let’s have a look at the Bollywood timeline during Covid-19.
The Bollywood Covid Hiatus & Post-Covid Comeback
If it had been a normal year, the industry would have been preparing for pre-Christmas releases around this time. However, the sudden onset of the pandemic and un-called-for events has certainly made 2020 one of the industry’s worst years.
Big-Name Celebrities Tested Positive ForCovid
Whether you are a Bollywood biggie or a common man, the novel coronavirus doesn’t discriminate when it comes to infecting people. It has affected many lives, and some of them have been renowned Bollywood celebrities of which the news has shaken the whole industry.
After many rumors circulating about the Bachchan family testing positive for Covid, Amitabh Bachchan took matters in his own hand to confirm. He cleared the air and added to the much-anticipated speculations regarding his family through his official Twitter. Soon after which Abhishek announced that both he and his wife Aishwarya, along with their daughter, have tested positive too.
Anupam Kher’s family
AnupamKher announced that where he had tested negative for Covid, his brother’s family and his mother had tested positive. He urged his fans through a video message he posted on his official Twitter to keep his family in good thoughts.
The much loved “Baby Doll” singer Kanika Kapoor was amongst the very first few celebrities to test positive for Covid. However, her news came with much speculation of its own as she was charged for negligence by the Indian police for attending various social events despite the lockdown.
One of the recent celebrities to test positive for Covid, Genelia had to quarantine for 21 days apart from her family. However, in an elaborate Instagram post, she told her fans that she was asymptomatic and quarantining for the longest time until she tested negative was her responsibility towards the masses.
Arjun Kapoor and Malaika Arora
The much-highlighted couple has by far been the most recent to jump on the Covid-19 bandwagon, with both of them testing positive as of early September.
Many Big-Budget & Popular Film Productions Were Halted
As 2020 started, fans were looking forward to a jam-packed year with back to back mega releases with their favorite celebrities. However, by the time any of the premiers neared, the country went into a 21-day lockdown, which has been prolonged ever since.
Around mid-March, Bollywood fans across the globe were excited for the latest installment of Rohit Shetty’s directorial super cop universe to hit the screens. Makers expected massive box office figures given how the release was planned on a national holiday. Unfortunately, the country-wide lockdown urged the makers to postpone the release indefinitely.
The much-awaited remake by director David Dhawan starring his son Varun Dhawan beside Sara Ali Khan, was a standout amongst other releases when 2020 started. As of now, the initially April release has no set date of the future.
The Kabir Khan directorial about the infamous cricket world cup win of 1983 starring Ranveer Singh was to premier earlier in April when the release was postponed indefinitely. Khan expressed his sentiments as very disappointing for him to make such a decision.
Laal Singh Chadha
It is an adaptation of the reclaimed Hollywood hit Forest Gump. The Bollywood version is an epic Aamir Khan starrer with no upcoming release date under its banner despite the wait and worldwide expectations of fans.
This is one film that is seeing delays ever since the idea hit the director, Ayan Khan. The multiple delays have regarded to various reasons amongst Covid being one, as the mega ensemble star cast of Bollywood biggies has been difficult to align under a single banner.
Famous & Untimely Deaths Jolted Bollywood
2020 has been an all-round bad year for Bollywood. As the world is trying to exercise new norms and work alongside the pandemic, the Hindi film industry deals with untimely deaths of some big names and prominent personnel of the fraternity.
Irfan Khan was a gem of an actor that left the industry in shackles at the peak of his career. The actor was reportedly battling colon cancer, and 2020 was the year where he lost his year-long battle and succumbed to the disease leaving many fans and fellow actors heartbroken.
For decades, the evergreen actor and entertainer left the industry this year to much devastation and an irreplaceable void. The mega actor was diagnosed with leukemia back in 2018. However, with a successful year of treatment in NYC, he returned back home only to give-in after a few months to complications caused by the underlying condition.
Sushant Singh Rajput
The death of superstar Sushant Singh Rajput was by far the biggest blow to Bollywood, the impact of which the industry is still dealing with. The actor allegedly committed suicide, and as the CBI is now handling the case, there are still many loopholes in the story being investigated. You can find many articles on the subject matter through coursework help.
The veteran choreographer affectionately known as Masterji, Saroj Khan, passed away due to cardiac arrest at the age of 71 earlier this year. The three-time national award winner was loved amongst fans and fellows, having served in the Hindi film fraternity for decades now.
One half of the infamous music duo Sajid-Wajid, Wajid Khan, passed away at a young age of 42 due to cardiac arrest. The hit music composer was known for his notable works for mega-hit Salman Khan starrers.
Mega-Hit Releases During Covid On Streaming Platforms
On the bright side, there were super hit releases on streaming platforms if not on big screens. The likes of movie releases on popular streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hotstar were far more and better even if they have been released across the country in cinema houses.
Malang was released worldwide on 7th February in cinemas initially. But due to the unprecedented situation surrounding the pandemic, it was difficult to carry on with the premier, and the film debuted on Netflix to many positive reviews amidst the pandemic.
A much-coveted movie, Gulabo Sitabo, wasn’t released theatrically but on Prime Video worldwide. However, the critical reception was much harsh towards the Bachchan starrer for a shaky narrative, praising only Ayushaman Khurrana for his usual high performance.
What are the odds?
The film had originally premiered last year at the Indian File Festival of Los Angeles and was officially released on Netflix later in May this year to favorable reviews. The film was so widely acclaimed that it peaked at #2 on the top Netflix releases in India and got featured in the GQ’s “top content to watch” list.
Bulbbul opened to an amazing response from both critics and the audience, premiering on Netflix. It was highly praised for its take on feminism while focusing on great visuals, background score, and lead performances.
The latest release for the Hindi film Netflix releases, Gunjan Saxena, became a successful biopic to highlight one of the first Indian female air-force pilots in combat. It was released to wide critical acclaim.
Bottom Line – Back On the Set
As of September 2020, the Indian authorities are easing the lockdown with a heavy focus on mandating SOPs. As the stars flood-in back on sets, the masses are hoping to wrap up the delayed projects as they look on to future online releases until the big screens are activated.