By Kamlesh Tripathi
Bollywood between diamond and Platinum jubilee
Remake: epic serial ‘Mahabharat’ starring superstars
‘Bollywood’ is the sobriquet for the Hindi film industry that is based out of Mumbai. The term is also, loosely used, as a synecdoche to refer to the whole of Indian cinema. It has made millions and trillions through movies. And has a huge Indian following. The name has even made ripples abroad. It has now been in existence for more than eighty five years. Raja Harishchandra, was the first silent feature film made by Dadasaheb Phalke in 1913. By 1930s, the Indian Film Industry was producing over 200 films per annum. Since then it has never looked back. It is one of the largest film producers in India. Representing 43% of net box office revenue. While Telugu and Tamil cinema represent 36%. The rest of the regional cinema constitutes 21% as of 2015. It is also one of the largest centers for film production in the world. Formally referred to as ‘Hindi cinema.’ It is one of the biggest movie industries in the world, in terms of the number of people employed and the number of films produced in 2011. Where, over 3.5 billion tickets were sold across the globe. Which in comparison is 900,000 tickets more than Hollywood.
Hitherto, Bollywood, has functioned quite enviously, under different banners for more than eighty five years. And has given us some wonderful movies. But it is about time. It now comes under one united banner. To give India the entertainment of a lifetime—the real dhamaka of the century.
It missed the lifetime opportunity of a diamond jubilee celebration. And platinum is still far away. But by then many superstars of today may hang their boots. So now is the right time. To produce a mega serial where all the diggajes of Bollywood can come together and act, and for the sake of Bollywood’s commemoration they should act free. If we delay it further. We may miss out on many such great actors coming together as they may call it a day. The idea is to make them act together in a mega project. Which may not be possible in a three hour movie. I would therefore suggest a remake of the great epic ‘Mahabharat’ which is still the most popular serial ever made in the Indian history.
Imagine how would you feel watching Mahabharat. Scripted by the all time famous duo of Saleem-Javed as was done in Sholay, music by A.R Rehman, songs by Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhonsale, Anuradha Podwal, Anup Jalota and Bhupendra (unfortunately Kishore and Mukesh are no more). And my dream my caste. To name a few would be: Amitabh Bachchan as Bheeshma Pitamah, Nana Patekar as Dronacharya, Anupam Kher as Mahatma Vidur, Ajay Devgun as Krishna, Amir Khan as Karan, Shahrukh Khan as Yudhistir, Salman Khan as Bheem, Kritik Roshan as Arjun, Ranbir Kapur as Nakul, Abhishek Bachchan as Sahdev, Javed Jafri as Shakuni, Danny as Dhritrasth (ideal would have been Amrish Puri, but sad he is no more), Jaya Bachan as Gandhari, Shabana as Kunti, Priyanka Chopra as Draupadi.
These are only few names and characters with my limited knowledge. Once you start detailing it. Many more icons will surface. To take on many more challenging characters of Mahabharat.
But will this ever happen? Well nothing is impossible. The way we like watching Mughle-Azam even after half a century. This serial too shall be watched for time immemorial.
Come on Bollywood. Start thinking about it.