Love stories over action formulae, not-so-happy endings and realistic tales from urban India. These were some of the trends that dominated Bollywood in 2013. And then there were a few others which not only moulded Indian cinema of the past year but promised to change its course in the future. Be it the support that independent films found in mainstream Bollywood, the acceptance and recognition of new talent in all aspects of filmmaking or the films that set the new benchmark of box-office records. The nominations of Kamala Pasand 20th Annual Life OK Screen Awards reflect these defining trends. TALK takes a closer look at the nominees to list them out.
Expanding on genres
Love stories were the flavour of the season in 2013, with films such as Raanjhanaa, Lootera and Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela achieving both acclaim and box-office numbers. However, some filmmakers decided to step out of this comfort zone and introduced Indian audience to genres that Bollywood has never explored before. Take, for instance, choreographer-director Remo D’Souza’s ABCD: Any Body Can Dance. A dance-based film with Prabhudheva in lead and dance reality show stars in other key roles, ABCD inspired many to experiment. Then, actor-producer Saif Ali Khan, under his banner Illuminati Films, backed director duo Raj Nidimoru-Krishna DK’s hilarious zombie film, Go Goa Gone. A far cry from the Ramsays’ zombie themes, this one was smart, thrilling and peppered with ROFL dialogues, which have won actor Kunal Kemmu a nomination under the Best Dialogue category. “Apprehensive of what we were attempting, many said that they’d heard of ghosts and spirits, but zombies were an unknown concept. We paid homage to them and included many such statements as dialogues in the film,” says Kemmu.
The mighty step in
Strong and unique storylines, tight scripts and flawless performances endeared films such as The Lunchbox, Ship of Theseus (SoT) and Shahid to the audience. Such films, made by little-known directors and with no stars to boast of, rarely have money to spend on marketing owing to the shoe-string budgets and have had a long-standing tradition of only touring the festival circuit. But help came from unexpected quarters in 2013. Kiran Rao stepped in to “present” SoT and managed to find a distributor for the film in Disney UTV, which later went on to release The Lunchbox and Shahid. “One of the big challenges of non-mainstream cinema is that it will always be niche and fight for space, and might end up a losing the battle. It is for people like us who have goodwill and credibility to push the kind of art we like,” Rao had said in an earlier interview. Taking cue, Karan Johar backed The Lunchbox while Aamir Khan lent support to Hansal Mehta’s biopic of the continued…