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The Story Continues

Friday, December 02, 2016
By Deepa Gahlot

This week’s release is Kahaani 2, a sequel to the 2012 film, by Sujoy Ghosh. Kahaani was unique in many ways.  Ghosh had signed Vidya Balan when her career was on the skid. Not just that, he cast her in the central role without a ‘hero’ to support her.

The vanity of a successful actress might have prevented her from taking on this role. Throughout the film, the character of Vidya Bagchi is dressed in shapeless kaftans, because she is heavily pregnant. Vidya did not have much to lose, since she was already been criticised for her full figure and lack of style. After her impressive debut in Parineeta, she also had not too many films till that point that called on her considerable talent.

Ghosh and his team used smart promotional tactics like plastering ‘Missing’ posters with actor Indraneil Sengupta all over. In the film, Vidya comes to Kolkata from London to look for her missing husband. As the review then had stated, “At Kalighat police station, a newly recruited cop Rana (Parambrata Chatterjee) takes a shine to her, and becomes her helper, sounding board and lock-picker as she goes from high tech offices to scary morgues to spooky old buildings trying to find clues about the man who seems not to exist. Then, tough-talking Intelligence Bureau man Khan (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) walks in, and there is added another layer or menace, intrigue and suspense…”

The hero of Kahaani was undoubtedly the script, which was clever, complicated and taut, even though in hindsight the loopholes became evident. The film was an audience pleaser and without having any of the elements of a mainstream film, it made the mandatory 100 crores that define a commercial success and Vidya Balan was right back in the running. She had signed this film before, but The Dirty Picture was released first and turned out to be a hit, and its success helped the box-office of Kahaani.  The very people who were making fun of her dress sense were now calling her a female Khan! Till then the only actress who could drive a film to such highs of success. Later, Kangana Ranaut and Queen joined the list.

There was another actor whose career zoomed off from here and that wasNawazuddin Siddiqui, till then a bit player, who was noticed in Kahaani and went on to become a leading man.

The audience was almost begging for Kahaani 2, mainly because they loved it and also perhaps to see if a movie miracle could be repeated.  In a couple of days they will know.

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