Women Take Lead
THE year 2020 has an impressive line-up of movies with women in the lead. On January 10, Meghna Gulzar’s Chhapaak, featuring Deepika Padukone as an acid attack survivor, is scheduled to release. The movie is inspired by the true story of acid attack survivor Laxmi Agrawal. Anubhav Sinha, who was widely appreciated last year for Article 15, will be back with Thappad, which will release on February 28. The film, set in Delhi, is the story of a marriage and features Taapsee Pannu, Tanvi Azmi and Ratna Pathak Shah. Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s much-talked about Gangubai Kathiawadi, with Alia Bhatt playing the titular role, is likely to release on September 11.
January 24 will see the release of Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari’s Panga, which has Kangana Ranaut play a national-level kabaddi player. Kabir Khan’s next, ’83 (pictured above), is tipped to be a major release of 2020. Ranveer Singh plays the role of Kapil Dev in the thrilling drama about India’s first cricket World Cup victory and the journey of a team seen as an underdog. The film releases on April 10. The director-actor team of Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and Farhan Akhtar will be back in the theatres with Toofan in October, about a boxer played by Akhtar. Later this year, Tapsee Pannu will be seen as a sprinter in Akarsh Khurana-directed Rashmi Rocket, mapping the journey of a fictional Gujarati girl named Rashmi, who is a fast runner.
The Wait Is On
An official remake of Forrest Gump, Laal Singh Chadda (pictured), will see Aamir turn a Sikh for the first time. The story will span a period of over 50 years. The December 25 release brings back Khan’s pairing with Kareena Kapoor Khan. The movie RRR is SS Rajamouli’s next after his epic Baahubali. The film is based on a fictional account and is delves into the early lives of two freedom fighters of India. The cast features Jr NTR, Ram Charan Teja, Alia Bhatt and Ajay Devgn. There is much excitement over Angrezi Medium, directed by Homi Adajania, which is likely to release in March.
In its 12th edition, the India Art Fair, to be held from January 30 to February 2, will boast over 75 galleries, from familiar names to new international participants. On view, among others, will be Ai Weiwei’s Martin, an iron sculpture made from “long-deceased roots of pequi trees” native to Brazil, and solo presentations by the likes of Avijit Dutta, KS Radhakrishnan and Subodh Kerkar. While the Performance Art Programme will present theatre performer Maya Krishna Rao, Lagos-based multimedia artist Jelili Atiku, and multi-disciplinary artist Piyali Ghosh, highlights from the artist talks include artists Nilima Sheikh, Naeem Mohaiemen, Alicja Kwade and Magnum photographer Martin Parr.
In a first of its kind of initiative, Bihar museum is organising a Museum Biennale to showcase treasures from several other Indian museums. “A conglomeration of seminal art and artefacts from museums across the length and breadth of the country, the biennale will be housed at the majestic Bihar Museum,” read a Facebook post on the official page of the Bihar Museum. The Biennale will take place from March 25 to June 25, at the museum premises in Patna, Bihar.
Mithai Goes Global
Despite tough competition from fine chocolates and European-style confections, Indian mithai has held its own in the country’s desserts market. But it’s getting an haute cuisine-twist now; some purveyors, such as Bikanervala, which has just launched a range of gourmet mithais called Saugaat, are using non-traditional techniques and ingredients. Also broadening mithai’s appeal is Khoya Mithai, which is digging deep into tradition to craft sweets that have a contemporary appeal. “Customers have begun to see the appeal of ‘modern’ Indian sweets. In response, many places are now doing ‘fusion’ sweets, but sometimes, to be contemporary, you have to go back in time,” says Sid Mathur, founder and director of Khoya Mithai.
Opening doors in the first week of January, in the heart of Delhi, is Padmanabhan, a vegetarian restaurant serving fare from the states of Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. Expect food that reflects southern India’s stunning vegetarian culinary diversity, going back to its influences from the four states. Housed in a temple-style facade inspired by Padmanabhaswamy temple Thiruvananthapuram — complete with mandala artwork inspired by Madurai’s Meenakshi temple, a majestic Balaji statue and chettinad pillars — the fine-diner will offer a rotating menu of meals as Bhojanam (unlimited thali) from the four states, besides a limited a la carte section. At 52, Janpath, from January 6 onwards.
If you were missing Game of Thrones and the wait for The Witcher Season 2 seems interminable, rest assured, help is round the corner. Netflix is bringing Bram Stoker’s Dracula in an eponymous three-part series. It will be helmed by Sherlock-fame Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss and stars Danish actor Claes Bang as the titular vampire. But for non-fantasy fans, second season of the highly enjoyable Sex Education streams in January. Closer home, we have Taandav, a political drama written by Gaurav Solanki and directed by Ali Abbas Zafar, streaming on Amazon.
He has enchanted us with his eye for detail and narratives from the far east and other places of the world, that he so painstakingly weaves in his clothes. Now, designer Rahul Mishra is all set to make his debut at the forthcoming edition of the 2020 Paris Haute Couture Week, in January.
American singer-songwriter Lauv will tell India how he is feeling with his ‘How I’m feeling World Summer Tour of Asia, 2020’. The pop music sensation will perform in Mumbai and Bengaluru in June. The tour comes on the heels of this forthcoming album, How I’m Feeling, which releases in March, 2020. Grammy-nominated R and B artist Khalid, too, is making a stopover in India. He will be performing in Mumbai and Bengaluru in April.
Brick by Brick
Architect-urban designer Rahul Mehrotra authors his book Working in Mumbai, which is a critical reflection on 30 years of the practice. The book will connect multiple engagements — of architectural practice, teaching, research, documenting, writing and exhibiting — since RMA came into being in 1990. There is also Courtyard Houses of India by Ahmedabad-based architect Yatin Pandya and Vastu-Shilpa Foundation will focus on traditional homes in India, and how the form was adapted and interpreted over the years. Also in the making is also author-historian Vikramaditya Prakash’s book One Continous Line: Art, Architecture and Urbanism of Aditya Prakash. It will present the philosophy and life of one of India’s first generation modernist architects.
Patty Jenkins wowed us with Gal Gadot’s avatar as Wonder Woman in 2017. In June, we have Wonder Woman 1984, where WW will reunite with Chris Pine, her co-star from the original film. She navigates the America of the ’80s as she wields her lasso. Former Avenger Natasha Romanoff finally gets her due from Marvel with the film Black Widow, which releases in May 2020.
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