20 Most Anticipated Films of 2015

For die hard Filmi fans like us, 2014 started on a शायराना note with Abhishek Chaubey's urdu दावत  Dedh Ishqiya and ended with Anurag Kashyap's dark, gloomy and fantastic Ugly. In spite of having stunning underrated films like Ankhon Dekhi, Filmistan, Sulemani Keeda and several other biggies like Queen, Haider, Highway and Dedh Ishqiya, 2014 was rather gloomy compared to terrific 2012 and 2013.

So as it is said रात गयी बात गयी , we will move away from 2014 and think of amazing films that awaits us in 2015. So just like our last year's post, we are back with yet another list where we talk about 20 Most Anticipated Films of 2015.

20. Main Aur Charles
Director - Prawaal Raman
Cast - Randeep Hooda, Richa Chadda & Adil Hussain

Prawaal Raman is a very underrated director. Barring ultra bore Tusshar Kapoor starrer Gayab (2004), Raman has given us two very different horror films in form of Darna Mana Hai (certain stories were brilliantly directed) and unnoticed psychological horror thriller 404 Error Not Found (2011). His next, Main Aur Charles is about famous conmen and serial killer Charles Shobraj (starring Randeep Hooda in the title role) who was known for his notorious serial murders and passport forgeries. Considering the enigmatic lifestyle of Shobraj, Raman's film can serve as great thriller set in '70s and '80s. Also it will be refreshing to see Raman attempting something other than horror genre.

19. Shamitabh
Director - R. Balki
Cast - Amitabh Bachchan, Dhanush & Akshara Hassan

One thing that is sure about R. Balki films is that they come with truckloads of feel good feelings and Ilaiyaraaja's music. Whether it be unconventional romance in Cheeni Kum (2007) or a heartwarming father - son story in Paa (2009), both films had that refreshing treatment to it. His next, Shamitabh revolves around our very own Bollywood film industry. A superstar lends his voice to deaf and mute junior artist but when junior artist becomes a star, an ego clash breaks out between the two over the success of film. Film will also have eminent film and TV celebrities doing cameos alike Zoya Akhtar's Luck By Chance. 

18. Bangistan
Director - Karan Anshuman
Cast - Riteish Deshmukh, Pulkit Samrat & Chandan Roy Sanyal

A Mumbai Mirror movie critic turned script writer/director Karan Anshuman's debut Bangistan is political satire shot extensively in Poland. It narrates the story of 2 aspiring terrorists but from opposite religions whose goofy acts will make an impact on world's peace. The prime reason for anticipating this film is that it is been produced by Excel Entertainment (Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani) who in past have given chance to budding filmmakers to showcase their talents and have churned out smart comedies in form of Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd. (Reema Kagti) and Fukrey (Mrigdeep Singh Lamba). Also it would be interesting to see Riteish Deshmukh doing a satire after all those non sense slapstick comedies he has done all these years.

17. Phantom
Director - Kabir Khan
Cast - Saif Ali Khan & Katrina Kaif

Kabir Khan's filmmaking sensibilities are quite oscillatory. If he pulled out YRF from those sappy romances with his hard hitting docu drama Kabul Express (2006) and an amazing emotional story depicting the aftermath of 9/11 attacks in New York (2009) then he also shocked us with ridiculous spy love story starring bhai in Ek Tha Tiger (2012). But going by the story of Phantom, which is based on S Hussain Zaidi's unreleased book about Indian secret agent who is recruited to combat global terrorism post 26/11 attacks. Film was shot in tension filled regions of Lebanon.

16. Piku
Director - Shoojit Sircar
Cast - Amitabh Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Irrfan Khan & Jishu Sengupta

After his stunning Yahaan (2007), Shoojit Sircar was about to start his next titled Shoebite/Johnny Walker starring Amitabh Bachchan but that film got cancelled due to row between two production companies (Percept and UTV). Since then he always wanted to do a film with Big B but never got a script suiting him. After making National Award winning Vicky Donor (2012) & Madras Cafe (2013), Shoojit is back with a heartwarming father - daughter relationship set against the backdrop of Kolkata. Deepika Padukone is in great form post Ram Leela and Finding Fanny and Irrfan does wonder when he is teamed with brilliant directors and actors. So it will be amazing to see how Shoojit brings out the best performances from Big B, Deepika Padukone and Irrfan. Also film will mark the debut of noted Bengali composer Anupam Roy.

15. NH 10
Director - Navdeep Singh
Cast - Anushka Sharma & Neil Bhoopalam

After stellar debut with Manorama Six Feet Under (2006), Navdeep Singh faced disappointment when two of his upcoming projects - Rock The Shaadi (a Big Fat Punjabi Wedding meets Zombie Comedy) and Basra both starring Abhay Deol were shelved. Finally he is directing his next which is horror thriller about the road trip of couple gone wrong with enough dose of women empowerment. Film is co-produced by Anurag Kashyap's Phantom Films and Anushka Sharma's Clean Slate Films.

14. Fan
Director - Maneesh Sharma
Cast - Shah Rukh Khan, Ileana D'cruz & Vaani Kapoor

SRK film on this list can raise some questions on my taste in movies. Even though the kind of crap that SRK is doing now doesn't take away that this same actor has given us some memorable performances with films like Kabhi Haan Kabhi Na (1993), Swades (2004), Chak De India (2007) & Devdas (2002). Fan will have SRK playing double role - one that of a die hard fan & other of the biggest superstar of Bollywood. Another reason I anticipate this film is because it is been directed by Maneesh Sharma who made a very accomplished debut with his Band Baaja Baaraat (2010) and gave one of the honest and researched rom-coms (Shuddh Desi Romance; 2013) in recent times. The renowned special effects makeup maestro and 3 times Oscar winner, Greg Cannom (famous for The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button, Dracula & Mrs. Doubtfire) has worked on developing the look of SRK in the film.

13. Tamasha
Director - Imtiaz Ali
Cast - Ranbir Kapoor & Deepika Padukone

After not so wonderful Rockstar (2011) and unusually charming Highway (2014), Imtiaz Ali is back with a big budget love story with two most sought actors in showbiz. Shot in Corsica, film revolves around two unknown individuals who strike an unusual bond due to their love for same comic series Asterix in Corsica. Music by none other than A R Rahman. After stunning music in Rockstar am totally waiting for this one.

12. Dil Dhadakne Do
Director - Zoya Akhtar
Cast - Ranveer Singh, Priyanka Chopra, Anil Kapoor, Farhan Akhtar, Anushka Sharma, Shefali Shah & Rahul Bose

Her last film, Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011) was about 3 friends who discover themselves on an adventurous road trip in Spain. Her next, Dil Dhadakne Do is about a dysfunctional family on a Cruise in Europe. Interestingly, Zoya had approached Ranbir Kapoor & Kareena Kapoor to play siblings while Katrina Kaif & Hrithik Roshan would play their respective better halves but due to several issues entire cast got revamped. Now, Ranveer Singh & Priyanka Chopra play siblings and Anushka Sharma & Farhan Akhtar play their respective better halves. Anil Kapoor & Shefali Shah will play parents to Ranveer & Priyanka. Expecting some eye popping cinematography by Carlos Catalan & music by SEL.

11. Wazir
Director - Bejoy Nambiar
Cast - Amitabh Bachchan, Farhan Akhtar & Aditi Rao Hydari

Bejoy Nambiar made one of the coolest and stylish film debuts in recent times with Shaitan (2011) and followed up that quirky style in his 13 episode TV Series MTV Rush but sadly his last work David (though beautifully shot) wasn't even close to his previous works. But having seen the trailer of Wazir we feel assured that Bejoy is back. Trailer has distinct Bejoy Nambiar visual style with flashes of noir in it. Though it is not clear from the trailer what exactly is the plot of the film (something related to terrorism in Kashmir, that's what it seems from some stills in promo) but it would be great to see Amitabh Bachchan as paralysed retired Chess Grandmaster and Farhan Akhtar as an ATS cop. Also penned by Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Abhijat Joshi & edited by Rajkumar Hirani.

10. Shaandaar

Director - Vikas Bahl
Cast - Shahid Kapur, Alia Bhatt, Pankaj Kapur, Sanah Kapur, Karan Johar & Sanjay Kapoor

Vikas Bahl directed Queen (2014) which is one of the best coming-of-age films in recent times. His next, Shaandaar revolves around two insomniacs (Shahid Kapur & Alia Bhatt) who fall in love over an elaborate destination wedding. Having worked in his father's film (Mausam), this is first time Shahid Kapur & Pankaj Kapur will share screen along with his sister Sanah Kapur. Strangely Bahl has assigned Pankaj Kapur as Alia's father while Karan Johar will play Shahid's father. Music by Amit Trivedi & editing by Anurag Kashyap. Shahid post Haider is in terrific form while Alia Bhatt has shown her acting prowess with Highway. Would be exciting to see how Vikas extracts performances from them.

9. Badlapur
Director - Sriram Raghavan
Cast - Varun Dhawan, Nawazuddin Siddique, Huma Qureshi, Yami Gautam, Vinay Pathak & Divya Dutta

After the disappointment of Agent Vinod (though long uncut picturisation of Raabta was stunning), Sriram Raghavan is back with Badlapur that reminds us of his earlier works (Ek Hasina Thi & Johnny Gaddaar) full with pulpy neo noir and gritty action. Badlapur narrates the story of Raghu (Varun Dhawan) who is keen to take revenge from Liak (Nawazuddin Siddique) who killed his family 15 years ago. Exciting female leads - Huma Qureshi, Yami Gautam, Radhika Apte & Divya Dutta. It would be fascinating to see Varun Dhawan play intense character that takes him out of his comfort zone and those chocolate boy looks.

8. Liar's Dice
Director - Geetu Mohandas
Cast - Geetanjali Thapa & Nawazuddin Siddique

Acclaimed cinematographer Rajeev Ravi's wife Geetu Mohandas, an acclaimed Malayalam actress turned director made her debut with this little film called Liar's Dice. The film went on to win 2 National Awards in 2014 for Best Actress (Geetanjali Thapa) & Best Cinematography (Rajeev Ravi) and was selected as India's official entry for Oscar 2015. But sadly did not get nomination but has made its presence felt at several film festivals (Mumbai, Sundance, Sofia International etc.). It's even more sad that very few even knew about this little gem. Liar's Dice narrates the story of a young mother Kamala (Geetanjali Thapa) who sets out from her tribal village near India China border in search of her missing husband in Delhi with the help of an unreliable con men (Nawazuddin Siddique).

7. Tumbad
Director - Rahi Anil Barve
Cast - Sohum Shah

Anand Gandhi after tasting critical & commercial success with Ship Of Theseus is back but this time as a producer. With almost same crew as that of SOT (Pankaj Kumar as DOP & Sohum Shah in lead) Tumbad is a period horror thriller set in pre & post independence era of Pune. For me the genre of Period Horror Thriller itself is so luring. Plus Rahi Anil Barve made an ultra dark disturbing B&W short film Maanjha which was praised by many including Danny Boyle for its unsettling theme.

6. Detective Byomkesh Bakshy
Director - Dibakar Banerjee
Cast - Sushant Singh Rajput, Anand Tiwari, Swastika Mukherjee, Neeraj Kabi & Meiyang Chang

After making critically acclaimed and diverse genre films like Khosla Ka Ghosla (2006), Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! (2008), Love Sex Aur Dhokha (2010) & Shanghai (2012); Dibakar Banerjee now decides to adapt Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay's famous detective novel into a hindi feature film. The official plot of film is stated as - In a contemporary interpretation of war torn Calcutta during the 1940's, the film follows the first adventure of Byomkesh (Sushant Singh Rajput), fresh out of college, as he pits himself against an evil genius who is out to destroy the world. It's his wits against the most villainous arch criminal the world has seen, in a world of murder, international political intrigue and seduction. And its official teaser had everything from Japanese armies to vintage Calcutta to seductive femme fatale to gothic feel and above all a death metal music. SOLD!

5. Tigers
Director - Danis Tanovic
Cast - Emraan Hashmi, Tannishta Chatterjee, Adil Hussain, Danny Houston & Supriya Pathak

Danis Tanovic who previously directed Oscar winner No Man's Land (2001), directs Tigers (previously titled White Lies) which narrates the story of young salesman Ayan (Emraan Hashmi) in a pharmaceutical industry in Pakistan who is devastated when he discovers the ill-effects of the infant formula he is peddling and challenges the system and power related to it. This typical David v/s Goliath story is narrated from the POV of documentary filmmakers who are filming a documentary on the life of Ayan instead of simple story from the POV of Ayan. This kind of genre of Docu-drama thriller is yet to be explored in our film industry and hence makes this one really enticing. Tigers is a co-production between India, France & Britain and has been produced by Anurag Kashyap & Guneet Monga. Tigers got a respectable applause at Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and music will be by Pritam.

4. Bombay Velvet
Director - Anurag Kashyap
Cast - Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, Karan Johar, Kay Kay Menon, Siddharth Basu, Vivaan Shah, Raveena Tandon & Manish Chaudhary

Initially planned as a Christmas release in  2014, Anurag Kashyap's magnum opus was preponed to November but due to extensive VFX & post production work pending, makers decided to release the film in May 2015. So finally Anurag Kashyap's Bombay Velvet will release on 15 May 2015. Based on Gyan Prakash's novel Mumbai Fables, Bombay Velvet is a neo noir period drama thriller set against the backdrop of '50s & '60s Bombay and shows Bombay's transformation into metropolis. Starring Ranbir Kapoor as street boxer, Karan Johar as an egoistic Parsi businessman (Main antagonist), Anushka Sharma & Raveena Tandon as Jazz singers and other stalwarts in industries like Kay Kay Menon, Manish Chaudhary & Siddharth Basu. Featuring cinematography by Rajeev Ravi, Jazz based music by Amit Trivedi and its International version will be edited by Martin Scorsese regular and three times Oscar winner Thelma Schoonmaker. Totally excited!!!!

3. Court
Director - Chaitanya Tamhane
Cast - Vira Sathidar, Vivek Gomber, Pradeep Joshi & Geetanjali Kulkarni

The most Internationally acclaimed Indian film in recent times. Debut Indie director Chaitanya Tamhane's Court narrates a bizarre court case where an ageing folk singer is tried in a court on the charges of abetment of suicide of a sewage worker in Mumbai. As the trial unfolds, personal lives of lawyers and judge involved in the case is explored which gives us an insight into class discrimination and hold of power in an Indian Judiciary. The film has gathered unprecedented critical acclaim at several Film Festivals but it would be interesting to see how Indians welcome this film.

2. Nyodda
Director - Meghna Gulzar
Cast - Irrfan Khan, Konkana Sen Sharma, Neeraj Kabi & Tabu

It must not have been easy for Meghna Gulzar to always live up to the expectations of her father Gulzar's directorial works. After making decent debut with Filhaal (2002) and okay-ish Just Married (2007), Meghna Gulzar returns to movies with Nyodda after 8 long years. Produced and written by Vishal Bharadwaj, Nyodda is fictional dramatization of shocking and sensational Aarushi Talwar & Hemraj double murder case. Film is believed to have some terrific performances from Irrfan (as Investigative officer), Konkana Sen Sharma (as mother), Neeraj Kabi (as father) and Tabu in a special appearance. Just like rest of his films, music will be by Vishal himself and lyrics by Gulzar. The reason this film comes at this spot surpassing Bombay Velvet and others is it will be quite interesting to see how VB & Meghna dramatise one of the complex and shocking double murder mystery (which is supposed to be a shocking case of honour killing) in recent times.

1. Titli
Director - Kanu Behl
Cast - Ranvir Shorey, Shashank Arora, Amit Sial, Lalit Behl & Shivani Raghuvanshi

So the top spot is reserved for debutant Kanu Behl whose Titli was showcased in Un Certain Regard Section at Cannes 2014. Co-produced by YRF & Dibakar Banerjee, Titli is set in dystopian Delhi where the youngest member Titli (Shashank Arora) of a violent carjacking family plots an escape. His struggle to do so is countered at each stage by his indignant brothers, who finally try marrying him off to 'settle' him.Titli, finds an unlikely ally in his new wife, caught though she is in her own web of warped reality and dysfunctional dreams. They form a strange, beneficial partnership, only to confront their inability to escape the bindings of their family roots. Will they be able to escape the violent nature of their family? Being an assistant to Dibakar Banerjee, Kanu Behl's treatment to the film is awe-inspiring. It is said to be the most unusual role for Ranvir Shorey and marks the return of talented actor Amit Sial after Love Sex Aur Dhokha (2010). But the best part is that this film is co-produced by YRF and I am glad that they are investing all those crores they earned from mindless hits like Dhoom 3 in Indie stuff like this. Hope other major production house also starts operating in this way.

Honorable Mention - This film was deliberately not included in above list because a Kamal Swaroop film surpasses all the Most Anticipated list that can ever be created. His films irrespective of everything are MUST MUST watch. After directing highly surreal satire Om Dar-Ba-Dar, auteur Kamal Swaroop returns to the director's chair after 26 long years (Rangbhoomi was an exception) and result is this brilliant documentary Dance For DemocracyThis documentary film by Kamal Swaroop attempts to provide an insight into the complex political structure of India, world's largest democracy, in the historic city of Banaras during the campaigning of Narendra Modi & Arvind Kejriwal for Lok Sabha Elections in 2014. Just take a look at its trailer and you will be amazed and mesmerised by Swaroop's visual and musical sense. That symphony style BGM is absolutely the best thing you will ever hear.

Some films worth waiting for - Baby (Neeraj Pandey), Hunterrr (Harshvardhan Kulkarni), Dum Laga Ke Haisha (Sharat Katariya), Hawaizaada (Vibhu Puri), Aur Devdas (Sudhir Mishra), Fitoor (Abhishek Kapoor) & Tanu Weds Manu 2 (Anand L Rai)

Still Waiting - Just the way Ashim Ahluwalia's Miss Lovely and Nitin Kakkar's Filmistan got theatrical release after couple of years of being in cans. I hope similar things happen in 2015 for some delayed films like -

Vasan Bala's long delayed debut Peddlers (showcased at Cannes 2012) starring Gulshan Deviah, Siddharth Menon & Nimrat Kaur.

Amit Kumar's Monsoon Shootout (showcased at Cannes 2013) starring Nawazuddin Siddique, Vijay Varma, Tannishta Chatterjee & Neeraj Kabi.

Ketan Mehta's Mountain Man starring Nawazuddin Siddique.

Mangesh Hadawale's Dekh Indian Circus (Won 4 National Awards in 2012) starring Nawazuddin Siddique & Tannishta Chatterjee. Produced by Vivek Oberoi and music by SEL.

Hope you liked the article and mention your Most Anticipated Film of 2015 in comments. It would exciting to see different choices coming!!


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