2020 was the year of OTT platforms. While several big-budget Bollywood films made their way to the web, several films were postponed multiple times with the hope of releasing in cinema halls, while a few missed their shooting schedules due to the lockdown. With theatres being shut for over 8 months this year, many films could not see the light of the day. However, 2021 hopes to be different with a massive lineup of projects gearing up for a theatrical release.
But even though films have started releasing in theatres, people haven’t yet returned to their full strength. The threat of the pandemic still looms over our heads, preventing many from entering the theatres. There is hope that 2021 will be different. And there are plenty of films to look forward to next year. So as we ring in 2021, here is a list of top Bollywood films we are all looking forward to watching this year.
Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom became the first film in the world to wrap its shoot amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The film finds itself in the company of a handful of international, mega-budget films that got back on the floors during the pandemic such as Tom Cruise's Mission: Impossible 7 and Jurassic Park: Dominion, managing to shoot in an unprecedented environment. In the process, Bell Bottom has become the first of these films to complete its entire shoot. Akshay had announced that Bell Bottom is wrapped and will be ready for an April 2, 2021 release. The film also stars Vaani Kapoor, Huma Qureshi and Lara Dutta. Bell Bottom is presented by Pooja Entertainment in association with Emmay Entertainment The film is produced by Vashu Bhagnani, Jackky Bhagnani, Deepshikha Deshmukh, Monisha Advani, Madhu Bhojwani and Nikkhil Advani. Bell Bottom is written by Aseem Arrora and Parveez Shaikh and is directed by Jayathirtha.
Akshay Kumar has got a plethora of projects this year. In August 2020, the allrounder star of Bollywood announced the film Raksha Bandhan on the occasion of the epynomous festival celebrating the brother-sister bond. The actor had dedicated the film to his sister, Alka Bhatia Hiranandani. Directed by Aanand L Rai, the film is yet to go on floors next year and will release on November 5. This is the first big Bollywood film that is slated for release on Diwali in 2021.
Gangubai Khathiawadi has to be one of the most anticipated films of 2021. Directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Gangubai Kathiawadi made headlines when it was announced with Alia Bhatt in the leading role. The actress’s first look was unveiled in January 2020 and gained traction soon after. The film is based on Hussain Zaidi's book Mafia Queens of Mumbai. The film recently got into some legal trouble after Gangubai's family filed a case against SLB and Alia over the film's script. However, it is said that the film will make it to the theatres in the first half of 2021.
On January 12, 2020, PeepingMoon.com exclusively informed its readers that Akshay Kumar has signed the dotted lines for Aanand L Rai's upcoming film starring Sara Ali Khan and Dhanush titled Atrangi Re. Soon, the official confirmation was given on the same. Reportedly, Sara will be seen romancing both Akshay and Dhanush in the film. The team of Atrangi Re recently shot at Taj Mahal in Agra, India. With the fresh pairing of Sara with Akshay and Dhanush, fans are eagerly waiting to watch the film which is said to release in the second half of 2021.
Jug Jugg Jeeyo
After much anticipation, Neetu Kapoor, Anil Kapoor, Varun Dhawan and Kiara Advani have collaborated for a family entertainer and honestly, we cannot wait to see this talented bunch together. Titled Jug Jugg Jeeyo, the film is directed by Raj Mehta, who recently wrapped the first Chandigarh schedule on December 28. Jug Jugg Jeeyo will see Anil and Neetu play Varun's parents. It is believed that their track will be high on humour. Add on: the film also stars YouTuber turned actor Prajakta Koli. Jug Jugg Jeeyo marks the maiden collaboration of Anil and Neetu with Varun and Kiara. In the past, the young actors teamed up for Kalank. Raj directed Kiara in 2019's blockbuster Good Newwz. Even though the film's exact release date is not out yet, it will release in the second half of this year. Cannot wait for 'happy wife, happy life' in 2021.
Shakun Batra’s next
PeepingMoon.com was the first to inform its readers about Deepika Padukone, Siddhant Chaturvedi and Ananya Panday being roped in for Shakun Batra's upcoming directorial. Karan Johar, who will be producing the modern-day relationship tale, too confirmed the news in a statement. Shakun, who has previously worked on Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu and Kapoor & Sons as a director, will also bankroll the film with Karan's production house - Dharma Productions. Ever since the announcement of the film was out, fans could not contain their excitement. The team was continuously shooting in Goa and Mumbai in October and November. The yet to be titled film is said to release on Valentine's Day in 2021 and we are definitely looking forward to watching this fresh trio.
Action king Rohit Shetty is all set to bring madness on the big screen with his new film with his Simmba Ranveer Singh. Presented by Bhushan Kumar in association with Reliance Entertainment, the film titled Cirkus is Rohit Shetty's take on The Comedy of Errors. After the massive success of Simmba and appearing in Sooryavanshi, Cirkus will mark the third outing of Rohit Shetty and Ranveer Singh. The film features an eclectic star cast which includes Pooja Hegde, Jacqueline Fernandes, Varun Sharma, Siddhartha Jadhav, Johnny Lever, Sanjay Mishra, Vrajesh Hirjee, Vijay Patkar, Sulbha Arya, Mukesh Tiwari, Anil Charanjeett, Ashwini Kalsekar, and Murli Sharma. Cirkus is currently being shot in Mumbai and is set to release in the winter of 2021.
Taapsee Pannu is all set to impress the audience once again as Savi with her upcoming film Looop Lapeta. The film is directed by ad filmmaker Aakash Bhatia and stars Tahir Raj Bhasin as Mannie, Savi's boyfriend. The film is an official remake of the German 1998 film Run Lola Run, written and directed by Tom Tykwer. With Franka Potente in the titular role of Lola, the film also starred Moritz Bleibtreu. The film follows a woman who needs to obtain 100,000 Deutsche Mark in 20 minutes to save her boyfriend’s life. Earlier slated to release in January 2021, the film will now make it to the theatres in the second half of this year.
Soon after Karan Johar announced the sequel of Dostana, the excitement level naturally shot up high. Starring Kartik Aaryan, Janhvi Kapoor and Lakshya, Dostana 2 is all set to delve into yet another hilarious tale with hints of gay love. Months after the announcement, the film went on floors in November 2019 in Chandigarh and was followed by a schedule in Mumbai. The film was likely to release in 2020 but was pushed due to the pending shoot that was stopped amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The film doesn't just mark the debut of director Collin D'Cunha but also of Lakshya, who was formerly known by the name of Laksh Lalvani, a popular face on television. The film is likely to release in the second half of 2021.
Bhoot Police was announced in 2019 with Saif Ali Khan, Ali Fazal and Fatima Sana Shaikh in the lead roles. However, Ali was replaced by Arjun Kapoor and Jacqueline Fernandez and Yami Gautam came on board in place of Fatima. The final announcement was made on September 3, 2020 and fans have been excited to watch the new pairing on screen ever since. The horror-comedy is being shot across Dharamsala, Dalhousie and Palampur and will be releasing in the first half of 2021.
Antim: The Final Truth
Salman Khan and Aayush Sharma are set to take us on a heart-thumping ride in Mahesh Manjrekar’s Antim: The Final Truth. The first look of the film was unveiled on December 21 and fans have been excited to see the duo ever since. Antim: The Final Truth is Salman’s first collaboration with his brother-in-law. Antim was formerly titled Guns Of North and was to be directed by Abhiraj Minawala. Abhiraj had directed Aayush in his debut film LoveYatri which failed to make an impact at the box office. Apart from Salman and Aayush, Antim stars Nikitin Dheer and Mahima Makwana. The film will hit the screens in the second half of 2021.
Kartik Aaryan surprised everyone as he recently wrapped the shoot of Ram Madhvani's upcoming thriller film, Dhamaka, in just 10 days. The film's shoot was planned to the tee and mostly restricted to a hotel in Powai. Kartik plays a journalist in Dhamaka, which is about a television channel’s live coverage of a terrorist attack. The film was carefully storyboarded before filming began. Kartik upped the excitement amongst fans as he shared his first look in December. Mrunal Thakur will reportedly play Kartik's leading lady in the film. Dhamaka is said to be releasing in the first half of 2021, however, the exact date is not confirmed yet.
Khuda Haafiz Chapter 2
Faruk Kabir's Khuda Haafiz that released on August 14, 2020, soon got a sequel after receiving a good response from critics and the audience. Starring Vidyut Jammwal and Shivaleeka Oberoi in lead roles, Khuda Haafiz showed them as a recently wedded couple from India that decides to go work overseas in search of better career opportunities. However, their dreams soon turn into a nightmare when Shivaleeka goes missing in a foreign land. The film also starred Annu Kapoor, Shiv Panditt and Aahana Kumra. Now, the second part will show the story of Vidyut's and Shivaleeka's love story after they reunite. The film is scheduled to release in 2021.
Bhuj: The Pride of India
Set amidst the backdrop of the 1971 Indo - Pak war, Ajay Devgn's Bhuj: The Pride Of India is an untold story of Squadron Leader Vijay Karnik and the brave 300 women of Bhuj who saved their home from being taken away during this war. These women came together to rebuild and repair the only runway in Bhuj, which was crucial for the war. With a stellar star cast like Ajay, Sanjay Dutt and Sonakshi Sinha, Bhuj is one of the much-awaited films making its way to the digital platform. The film will premiere on Disney+Hotstar in 2021.
Om: The Battle Within
Aditya Roy Kapur and Sanjana Sanghi left fans excited as they teamed up for the first time for Ahmed Khan-produced OM-The Battle Within. Directed by action director Tinu Verma's son Kapil Verma, OM-The Battle Within is produced by Zee Studios, Ahmed and Shaira Khan. It will release in 2021, however, no exact date has yet been announced. OM team is aiming to wrap the shoot by March 2021.
Chandigarh Kare Ashiqui
Ayushmann Khurrana and Vaani Kapoor are all set to impress the audience with their new pairing in Bhushan Kumar's and Pragya Kapoor’s venture Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui. The modern love story helmed by ace director Abhishek Kapoor has become one of the first mainstream Indian films to wrap under 2 months in a pandemic. A T-Series and Guy in the Sky Pictures production, Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui is produced by Bhushan and Pragya and is eyeing a 2021 release.
Shahid Kapoor is all set to feature next in Jersey, a Hindi remake of the Telugu hit of the same name. The Hindi version will be directed by Gowtam Tinnanuri, who also helmed the original film. The story is about a talented but failed cricketer named Arjun, who decides to make a comeback in his late thirties and play for India, in order to fulfill his son's wish. Shahid's film also features Mrunal Thakur as the female lead and is eyeing a 2021 release.
In 2003, ace filmmaker Priyadarshan gave Bollywood, Hungama, one of the cult comedies till date. The filmmaker with producer Ratan Jain is all set to return and revive this cult comedy with double the laughter, double the fun and double the entertainment! The film stars Paresh Rawal, Shilpa Shetty Kundra, Meezaan Jaffery and South sensation Pranitha Subhash in pivotal roles. The film will mark Shilpa's return to Bollywood after a gap of 13 years, she will also be seen in Nikamma this year. With fresh and quirky casting, the comedy franchise is bound to crack you up once again and is planning to be released in the second half of 2021.
Taapsee Pannu and Vikrant Massey are all set to collaborate for the first time in Aanand L Rai produced film. Titled Haseen Dillruba, the project is said to be a romantic thriller with the premise of a murder mystery. Haseen Dilruba is directed by Vinil Mathew, of Hasee Toh Phasee fame. Aanand, who is co-producing the film with Himanshu Sharma revealed that the feature film will be an entertaining and engaging watch. The film will release in the first half of 2021. Haseen Dillruba is produced by Colour Yellow Productions and presented by Eros International and Aanand. It is written by Kanika Dhillon.
Ananya Panday is all set to romance the heartthrob of South cinema-Vijay Deverakonda. Titled Fighter, the film is directed by Puri Jagannath and will enjoy a pan-India release. The Puri Jagannath directorial not just marks Vijay's first Hindi language film but also Ananya's maiden tryst with a pan-India release. Karan Johar is the presenter and joint producer. The film will star Ramya Krishnan, Ronit Roy, Vishu Reddy, Aali and Getup Srinu. The film will release in the second half of 2021.
Vidya Balan's fans have been desperately waiting to watch her on-screen in Sherni. Directed by Amit Masurkar, the film is based on the slain tigress Avni, who was shot dead in Maharashtra’s Yavatmal district in November 2018. Vidya is said to play a forest officer who aims to find a solution to the man-wild conflict. The actress was shooting for the film in Madhya Pradesh in November end and will be wrapping it up soon. The film is scheduled to release in the first half of 2021.
One of the most anticipated films of this year has to be Adivi Sesh's Major. Mahesh Babu has turned producer for the film that is based on the life of 26/11 Mumbai attacks martyr Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan. Directed by Sashi Kiran Tikka, Major has been shot in Hindi and Telugu. It also stars Sobhita Dhulipala, Saiee Manjrekar, Prakash Raj, Revathi and Murali Sharma. Produced by Sony Pictures Films India in association with Mahesh Babu's GMB Entertainment and A+S Movies, Major is slated to release in summer 2021.
2020 FILMS THAT GOT PUSHED TO 2021 AMID THE PANDEMIC
Ever since Simmba released in 2018, fans have been excited to watch Rohit Shetty's next big action entertainer - Sooryavnashi with Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif-in the lead. While the film was originally slated to release in March 2020, the novel coronavirus pandemic thwarted the makers’ plans and the film’s release had to be delayed until 2021. Also starring Ranveer Singh and Ajay Devgn, the film is expected to release in the first quarter of 2021. The film is an addition to Rohit's cop universe that includes Singham and Simmba.
Touted to be the biggest film of 2020, all eyes were on '83‘s release in April which was delayed due to the ongoing pandemic. In the film, Ranveer Singh stars as the then skipper Kapil Dev while Deepika Padukone plays Kapil's wife Romi Dev. The film also stars Saqib Saleem, Pankaj Tripathi, Tahir Raj Bhasin, Harrdy Sandhu, Ammy Virk, Jiiva, Sahil Khattar, Chirag Patil and Adinath Kothare in key roles. '83 is helmed by Kabir Khan and traces India’s historic Cricket World Cup win in 1983 and is one of the most awaited films. The film was earlier said to release in December 2020 but was delayed again due to fewer people visiting the theatres. The film is now said to release in the first half of 2021.
Radhe: India's Most Wanted Bhai
Salman Khan’s Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai was supposed to be his Eid treat to fans in 2020. However, the Prabhudheva directorial was postponed due to the pandemic. Now, it is said that Salman's next big film Radhe will release on Eid 2021. If the film gets an Eid opening then there will be a big box-office clash as John Abraham's Satyameva Jayate 2 is also scheduled to open on the same date. Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai also stars Disha Patani and Jackie Shroff. The film is directed by Prabhudeva and is produced by Sohail Khan and Atul Agnihotri's production house Reel Life Entertainment.
Bollywood's favourite couple Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt will be sharing the screen space for the first time and fans are eagerly waiting to watch the lovebirds together. Brahmastra was supposed to be one of the biggest releases of 2020 but the film was postponed yet again due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The film also stars Amitabh Bachchan and Mouni Roy. A new release date is yet to be announced but it is said that 2021 is the year we will get to see Ranbir and Alia share screen space for the first time.
Laal Singh Chaddha
Aamir Khan's and Kareena Kapoor Khan's Laal Singh Chaddha has been making the right buzz ever since its announcement. Shot in Kolkata, Delhi, Rajasthan, Chandigarh and Amritsar, the Advait Chandan directorial has piqued the interest of avid cine-goers. Laal Singh Chaddha is the official Hindi remake of Tom Hanks’ Forrest Gump. The classic 1994 film was directed by Robert Zemeckis. The release date of the film was December 25, 2020 but was postponed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Laal Singh Chaddha will now release on Christmas, 2021.
Karan Johar's upcoming war film Shershaah is one of the highly awaited projects of 2021. Starring Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani in the lead roles, Shershaah finds itself amidst extreme fanfare ever since its announcement back in May 2019. The film was supposed to release on July 3, 2020, but was postponed due to the pandemic. Now, the film is all set to release in 2021. Shershaah is directed by Vishnuvardhan, written by Sandeep Srivastava and produced by Karan under his banner of Dharma Productions. The film pays tribute to late captain Vikram Batra, an Indian Army officer who was posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra for his bravery during the 1999 Kargil war. Kargil Vijay Diwas is named after him and the success of Operation Vijay under which, India successfully took charge of high outposts on July 26, 1999, which had been lost to Pakistani intruders during the Kargil war.
Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2
Kartik Aaryan's upcoming horror-comedy Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2, ever since its announcement, has managed to make buzz for all the right reasons. The Anees Bazmee directorial which is a sequel to 2007's film by the same name has undoubtedly piqued the interest of the audience. Bhool Bhulaiyaa was directed by Priyadarshan and featured Vidya Balan, Akshay Kumar and Shiney Ahuja in central roles along with Ameesha Patel, Paresh Rawal, Rajpal Yadav and others in important roles. Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2, apart from Kartik and Kiara, stars Tabu. The film is produced by Bhushan Kumar and Murad Khetani and was earlier scheduled to release on July 31, 2020. However, it got pushed like several other films. Directed by Pavan Kirpalani, the film is now said to release in the second half of 2021.
Sardar Udham Singh
The much-anticipated film of 2020, the biopic Sardar Udham Singh starring National Award winner Vicky Kaushal is the rare and untold story of one of the bravest freedom fighters of India. Shoojit Sircar takes forward his distinctive legacy of unconventional stories onscreen, by showcasing the life of Udham Singh, the great Martyr and Indian freedom fighter who bravely assassinated Michael O' Dwyer in 1940, London. The assassination was in revenge for the brutal and tragic Jallianwala Bagh massacre in Amritsar in 1919. Sardar Udham Singh is a Rising Sun Film Production, produced by Ronnie Lahiri and Sheel Kumar. The film was all set to release on October 2, 2020, but was postponed due to the circumstances. Vicky's much-awaited film will now hit the screens in 2021.
Satyameva Jayate 2
John Abraham and Divya Khosla Kumar’s Satyameva Jayate 2 is yet another film to look forward to next year. The previous installment, Satyameva Jayate, was a surprise hit at the box office and the song Dilbar from the film topped charts. Now, with the second part releasing in 2021, all John fans are looking forward to watching him on-screen, doing the commendable action that he does. Directed by Milap Zaveri, the film was to roll in April this year but the plan got disrupted due to the lockdown. The action-thriller was initially scheduled to release on October 2, 2020, but now, it will release on Eid this year - May 12, 2021.
Taapsee Pannu is all set to play a young girl from a village in RSVP’s next, Rashmi Rocket. Priyanshu Painyuli of Bhavesh Joshi Superhero fame is paired up opposite Taapsee.The film is based on a fictional story of a woman hailing from Kutch, who aspires to become a sprinter and we are already excited to get to know about what’s in store. The actress left no stone unturned to work hard on her physical appearance to look every bit of an athlete and nail the form required for her character Rashmi. The film is produced by Ronnie Screwvala, Neha Anand and Pranjal Khandhdiya and directed by Akarsh Khurana. Rashmi Rocket was supposed to hit the theatres in early 2020. However, it got pushed due to the nationwide lockdown. The film is now said to be releasing in 2021.
Kangana Ranaut, after delivering an endearing and strong performance as Jaya in Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari's Panga, is all set to take us on a journey with her to learn about the life of former Tamil Nadu CM, late J Jayalalithaa through her biopic. Titled Thalaivi, the film will revolve around how a leading actress gave up her career at its peak to serve the public of Tamil Nadu as a politician. Thalaivi will be released in three different languages namely Hindi, Tamil and Telugu. The multi-lingual film is directed by AL Vijay while the script is written by Vijayendra Prasad. Apart from Kangana, Thalaivi stars Arvind Swami, who will play the role of the actress' onscreen mentor MGR. Produced by Vishnu Vardhan Induri and Shaailesh R singh for Vibri Motion Pictures in association with Karma Media & Entertainment, Thalaivi was supposed to release on June 26, 2020. However, it will not hit the screens in the first half of 2021. The actress wrapped the film on December 12, 2020.
Shilpa Shetty, after a thirteen-year long sabbatical, will be returning to the silver screens with Sabbir Khan's Nikamma. The film, which has already managed to create a positive stir across the industry, also stars Abhimanyu Dassani and YouTuber Shirley Setia. Soon after the coming-of-age film went on floors, fans of the gorgeous actress, who were waiting to watch her cast her magic on screen, went into a zone of excitement and kept on their toes for further updates. The film was supposed to hit the screens on June 5, 2020 but will now release in the first half of 2021. Nikamma is directed by Shabbir and jointly produced by Sony Pictures International Productions and Sabbir Khan Films.
Ajay Devgn made the right amount of buzz when he first announced Amit Ravindernath Sharma's sports-drama Maidaan. The film orbits around the golden years of Indian football between 1951 and 1962. The film is presented by Zee Studios and Boney Kapoor. It is produced by Boney, Akash Chawla and Arunava Joy Sengupta. The screenplay and dialogues are written by Saiwyn Quadros and Ritesh Shah respectively. Maidaan, apart from Ajay, stars Priyamani and is scheduled to release in August 2021. Maidaan was earlier supposed to release on November 27, 2020 but later got postponed due to the pandemic.
Bhagyashree's son Abhimanyu Dassani will be seen with Mrunal Thakur in family entertainer Aankh Micholi, which is being helmed by Umesh Shukla. After the success of 102 Not Out, Sony Pictures Films India and Shukla have come together for Aankh Micholi. The film revolves around a family of misfits. It was expected to be a Diwali 2020 release, however, the film will not hit the screens in 2021.
We have all been waiting for Karan Johar’s Magnum Opus, Takht ever since the filmmaker announced it in 2018. It was supposed to mark KJo's return to direction after his 2016 film Ae Dil Hai Mushkil. Takht was announced on a grand scale with a steller cast of Ranveer Singh, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Vicky Kaushal, Alia Bhatt, Janhvi Kapoor, Bhumi Pednekar and Anil Kapoor. The film was slated to release in Diwali 2020. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been no update on the shooting schedule or the new release date.