They are the uncrowned kings of the box office. Yet, for their releases in 2014, some of the industry’s biggest superstars — Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Akshay Kumar and Ajay Devgn — are finding it hard to pair up with the top female actors.
Aamir Khan is an exception (working with Katrina Kaif in Dhoom:3 and Anushka Sharma in P.K.). But it seems the other big guys will only be working with newbies.
“Where are the female actors?” asks producer Ramesh Taurani, who has cast Tamannaah Bhatia in the Akshay-starrer It’s Entertainment. He adds, “Since there are only a few top female stars, it’s difficult to match their dates with male stars.” Trade analyst Amod Mehra says,
“Ego issues also crop up, and top male stars don’t want to share credit with big female actors.”
What are top heroines up to?
Kareena Kapoor: Post-Satyagraha (upcoming; opposite Ajay Devgn), she teams up with Imran Khan for the Karan Johar production, Gori Tere Pyaar Mein.
Katrina Kaif: Her next is Yash Raj Films’ Dhoom:3 with Aamir Khan, followed by the Hrithik Roshan-starrer Bang Bang.
Deepika Padukone: Post-Chennai Express, she will be seen with Ranveer Singh (Ram Leela), Ranbir Kapoor (Imtiaz Ali’s untitled next) and Arjun Kapoor (Finding Fanny).
Priyanka Chopra: Her next is the Zanjeer remake with Ram Charan Teja. She will then be seen in Gunday (with Ranveer and Arjun), the biopic on Mary Kom, and Milan Talkies (with Imran).
New co-stars: Daisy Shah, Sana Khan (Mental); Jacqueline Fernandez (Kick)
For debut actresses, Salman is considered to be jinxed — Sonakshi Sinha being the only exception. The list of debutantes with failed careers is long: Bhagyashree (Maine Pyaar Kiya; 1989), Nagma (Baaghi; 1990), Chandni (Sanam Bewafa; 1991), Sneha Ullal (Lucky: No Time For Love; 2005) and Zarine Khan (Veer; 2010). Salman will be seen with Daisy and Sana in Mental, and Jacqueline bags Sajid Nadiadwala’s Kick.
Our take: Whatever film he touches turns to gold. Does a famous heroine really matter?
Shah Rukh Khan
New co-stars: Ankita Lokhande (Happy New Year)
Shah Rukh has a terrific track record with d