The world is still trying to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak, let alone reeling from the effects of it. Economists have hinted at a global financial crisis during the coming future. The entertainment industry has been badly hit by the lockdown restrictions that have been imposed. Theatres have been shut in India since the third week of March. And there is no clear sign of the establishments opening up again soon. With that, the release of dozens of movies has been stalled. Akshay Kumar's Sooryavanshi, Janhvi Kapoor's Kargil Girl are just a few of the movies that have missed their release dates. Radhe, Sooryavanshi or '83 May Not Release Immediately After The Lockdown is Lifted - Here's Why.
Rumours are rife that many of the Bollywood movies will skip the theatrical release altogether and head for the digital release on streamers like Disney Plus Hotstar, Prime, Netflix, Zee5. Trade experts have suggested that this will, indeed, be the best route for the film industry to survive right now. So, here we are looking at most of the titles rumoured to be dropping on a streaming platform, and checking how likely it's possible.
Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl
Janhvi Kapoor's Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl (a biopic on Gunjan Saxena, the first female Indian Air Force pilot in combat) is the latest film to have been rumoured to be going for Netflix. The actress has said in an interview, "Yes, my film was scheduled to release in April"
Update: Janhvi has said in an interview with Filmfare that there is about 20 days worth of VFX work pending for the film. But, on June 9, Janhvi, Karan Johar and Netflix confirmed that the film will be releasing on the streamer. A date is yet to be revealed.
Rumour has it that along with Gunjan Saxena, Netflix has also acquired the rights for Khaali Peeli. The movie stars Ishaan Khatter and Ananya Panday.
Update: One day of shooting is still pending for the film. Ishaan is to shoot for a song.
Akshay Kumar's horror-comedy heading for OTT platforms has emerged as the strongest rumour.
Update: As per trade analyst, Taran Adarsh, a lot of post-production work on the film is still left. There's VFX, dubbing, background score still pending.
However, on June 29, in a virtual press conference, Akshay Kumar announced and CONFIRMED that Laxmmi Bomb will be releasing on Disney Plus Hotstar, putting all speculations to rest. A release date for the film has not been announced yet.
Salman Khan's Radhe, with Disha Patani, was scheduled to release on Eid this year. Rumour has it that it might drop on a streamer.
Update: Two song sequences are still pending to be shot. Dubbing, VFX, post-production work also pending.
Ranveer Singh's film where he plays the role of former Indian skipper Kapil Dev is averting the rumours of a digital release.
Update: Minimal post-production pending. Unlikely to hit the web as the film’s producers have refuted the rumours. Director Kabir Khan has said that he will release his film theatrically. "I’m very clear that I will be releasing my film in the theatre. I’ve made my film for the big screens, and I will wait. But for those who are not ready to wait, I think it’s absolutely fair for them to then carry on," he said.
The anthology film by Anurag Basu that stars Rajkummar Rao, Fatima Sana Shaikh, Abhishek Bachchan and others. The movie is rumoured to be heading straight to digital.
Update: Official announcement awaited.
Based on real-life events, directed by Nagraj Manjule, this sports films stars Amitabh Bachchan in the lead role. But is the movie skipping a theatrical release?
Update: Official announcement awaited.
The film stars Ayushmann Khurrana and Amitabh Bachchan. The movie's first copy is even out, as per Taran Adarsh.
Update: Director Shoojit Sircar has said: "I’m open to a digital release if need be." It was CONFIRMED on May 14 that the movie release on Amazon Prime Video on June 12.
The movie stars Vidya Balan as the world-famous Indian mathematician who calculated numbers faster than a computer. According to a report in Box Office Worldwide, Abundantia Entertainment and Sony Pictures Networks India are looking to release the film online on Amazon Prime Video.
Update: On May 15, it was CONFIRMED that the film will release on Amazon Prime Video. The release date of the film is yet to be disclosed by the OTT platform or the makers.
The Siddharth Malhotra starrer biopic on Vikram Batra is also part of the rumour that it is headed straight to Netflix.
Update: No official confirmation.
For the longest time, Sushant Singh Rajput and Sanjana Sanghi's The Fault In Our Stars adaptation has been looking for a release. The movie was delayed multiple times before being rumoured to drop online even before the lockdown was imposed. The makers had said during the lockdown that the movie will be looking forward to a theatrical release.
UPDATE: The makers and Sanjana announced on June 25 that Dil Bechara will release on Disney Plus Hotstar on July 24. Sushant died by suicide on June 14. After his death, it has been announced that Dil Bechara will be available for non-subscribers of the streaming platform as well.
Alia Bhatt will be featuring in a film directed by her father, Mahesh Bhatt, for the first time. The sequel to the '90s film will feature the original cast of Pooja Bhatt and Sanjay Dutt. Aditya Roy Kapur also stars in the film. Kailash Parbat will play an important part in the story, which is rumoured to be a take on the self-styled Godmen in India.
UPDATE: It has been CONFIRMED that Sadak 2 will now release digitally on Disney Plus Hotstar. Stay tuned for a release date of the film.
Bhuj: The Pride Of India
The patriotic film stars Ajay Devgn, Sonakshi Sinha, Nora Fatehi, Sanjay Dutt and others. The story is about IAF Squadron Leader Vijay Karnik who reconquered the IAF airbase with the help of 300 local women during the Indo-Pak war in the 70s. The movie was also rumoured to be dropping online.
UPDATE: On May 29, it was confirmed that Bhuj: Pride of India will release online on Disney Plus Hotstar. The streaming date has not been unveiled yet.
Come back for updates on this story.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on May 13, 2020 06:13 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).