Any actor would want to have film releases at regular intervals. But in 2014, many Bollywood stars gave the box office a miss with no releases in the year. This list includes Ranbir Kapoor, John Abraham, Sushant Singh Rajput and Imran Khan.
But don’t write them off just yet — they are all set to return in 2015.
Trade experts feel that it doesn’t really matter how many films a star has coming up. "In today’s day and age of media and social media, the concept of ‘out of sight, out of mind’ doesn’t exist. Big names will never be affected by their absence from the screen," says trade analyst Amod Mehra.
Filmmaker Sanjay Gupta, who is all set to work with John in his upcoming film, seconds this opinion. "It doesn’t affect a star. Even if they aren’t seen in a film, their public appearances and endorsements keep them in the public eye," he says.
John will have multiple other releases next year too — such as Welcome Back and Rocky Handsome. Similarly, Sushant, who was last seen in a lead role in Shuddh Desi Romance (2013) and a special appearance in PK, could not keep a date with 2014 when Detective Byomkesh Bakshy was pushed from December to next year. The actor will now also have the MS Dhoni biopic releasing in 2015.
Likewise, Ranbir, too, was left without a release in 2014 — except a blink-and-miss part in PK — when Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet was pushed to next year. However, now, the actor has a packed year ahead with Roy, Anurag Basu’s Jagga Jasoos, and Imtiaz Ali’s Tamaasha also hitting theatres.
Missing in 2014
Last seen in: Besharam (2013)
Up next: Roy
Sushant Singh Rajput
Last seen in: Shuddh Desi Romance (2013)
Up next: Detective Byomkesh Bakshy
Last seen in: Madras Cafe (2013)
Up next: Welcome Back
Last seen in: Gori Tere Pyaar Mein (2013)
Up next: Katti Batti
And the actors aren’t really losing sleep. "My next film is important to me, not because of the timing, but because it’s a special role. I learnt much more in these seven months than I did during eight years of working in theatre, TV and films," says Sushant.
Imran, who was last seen in 2013 in Gori Tere Pyaar Mein, was also missing from the big screen. "I didn’t want to work immediately after Avantika’s (wife) delivery. So, it made no sense to sign films that required me to work in that period," says Imran, whose next will be Nikhil Advani’s Katti Batti.
Among actresses, 2015 will see the comeback of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, who was last seen in Guzaarish (2010). Next year, she will star in Sanjay Gupta’s Jazbaa and Karan Johar’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil.
Missing in action
Even though a number of missing stars will be back in 2015, a handful of big names aren’t likely to have a rendezvous with the box office during the same period.
Aamir Khan’s next, Dangal; the Ajay Devgn-starrer Shivaay (also to be directed by him), and Mohenjo Daro starring Hrithik Roshan, are all unlikely to release next year.
"The genre is action-drama, and it’s an expensive film. It will almost entirely be shot outside India," says Ajay.