Bollywood, which often runs out of content, has repeatedly turned to other movie industries across India – especially from the southern states – to remake their biggest hits. First Vikram Vedha now Drishyam 2, remake season looks to be never be ending in Bollywood.
Bollywood remake saga
The latest Bollywood remake of the Tamil hit Vikram Vedha, helmed by the directors of the Tamil-language original, was released in theatres in September with good reviews. However, the film only made 74.47 crores* till now, and the film is looking to stretch at maximum towards the 77 crores mark before the third weekend is through.
Keeping the remake season alive, now it’s announced that Bollywood’s next remake film will be Ajay Devgn’s Drishyam 2. It’s a remake of the Mohanlal starrer Malayalam film by the same name. The makers of the Abhishek Pathak film will unveil the trailer in Goa on Monday, October 17. Its star cast features Ajay Devgn, Tabu, Shriya Saran, Akshaye Khanna, Ishita Dutta, Mrunal Jadhav, and Rajat Kapoor.
After the announcement, some corners of the internet also began furiously debating Bollywood’s seeming inability to come up with fresh content- and its over-reliance on the south for scripts.
Experts say that while Bollywood seems to be struggling to find what works now, southern industries are exploding with fresh ideas and young talent.
Mr. Nahta, a trade analyst, says, “South Indian films are available on so many platforms that Bollywood remakes are no longer relevant. So in the age of films where all dubbed versions are released simultaneously with the original, there’s no question of remakes because everything is original,” reported BBC news.
The two big hits so far this year are K.G.F: Chapter 2 and RRR. They both were made originally in Kannada and Telugu, respectively, but their dubbed versions did good business in northern India.
OTT platforms have also started to pay more attention to subtitling and dubbing in other languages. A Hindi-language version of both KGF and RRR, released on Netflix and Amazon Prime, respectively, was among the service’s most-watched titles for weeks.
“So in the age of films where all dubbed versions are released simultaneously with the original, there’s no question of remakes because everything is original,” Mr. Nahta says.
The upcoming remake movies of Bollywood are- Ajay Devgn starrer Drishyam 2, Kartik Aaryan starrer Shehzada( remake of Allu Arjun’s Telugu blockbuster), Janhvi Kapoor starrer Mili (Malayalam film remake), Akshay Kumar starrer Soorarai Pottru, Deepika Padukone and Amitabh Bachchan starrer The Intern (Hollywood remake).
Mr. Nahta believes that Bollywood filmmakers turn to southern movies for practical reasons, not just creative ones.
“Filmmakers are worried about experimenting with completely new ideas because making films is an expensive affair,” he says.
With a durable script in their hand, directors hope to cash in on films that are hits in their original languages by remaking them for a large Hindi-speaking audience.
“Nothing can be guaranteed, of course, but because it’s a tried-and-tested formula, filmmakers feel it would work in Hindi as well,” Mr. Nahta concluded.