Industry experts say this is an effort to turn traditional horror genre on its head and churn out films, many of which are based on folk tales and legends and bring in local cultural nuances instead of simply having stories centred around supernatural forces
New Delhi: Kartik Aaryan-starrer Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 will add to Bollywood’s legacy of sequels and horror comedies this year. The film directed by Anees Bazmee and produced by Bhushan Kumar’s T-Series, is a standalone sequel to Priyadarshan's 2007 cult film Bhool Bhulaiyaa that featured Akshay Kumar, Vidya Balan, Shiney Ahuja and Amisha Patel.
Slated for release on 19 November, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 stars Kiara Advani and Tabu alongside Aaryan. The original film had made close to ₹50 crore in domestic box office collections when released in 2007.
To be sure, Bollywood is betting big on horror comedies, especially after the success of Roohi earlier this month. The makers of Roohi, also known for Stree, are now planning Bhediya, starring Varun Dhawan and Kriti Sanon next year which will complete their horror comedy universe. Industry experts say this is an effort to turn the traditional horror genre on its head and churn out films, many of which are based on folk tales and legends and bring in local cultural nuances instead of simply having stories centred around supernatural forces.
Horror, they add, has worked in India since the days of the Ramsay brothers and when it is merged with comedy, it only drives audiences to laugh louder and get more scared, an experience that is ultimately aimed at enticing them to enter cinemas. That makes it an important ploy for an industry struggling to fill seats in movie theatres with the emergence of video streaming platforms and the plethora of entertainment options they offer, a trend that has only been accelerated by the covid-19 pandemic.
Trade analyst Taran Adarsh said unlike many other genres, horror is not dependent on stars and it is up to the content to make a mark, send shivers down the spine or in these cases, make people smile. Films made by Ramsay brothers such as Do Ghaz Zameen Ke Niche (1972) and Purana Mandir (1984) had worked without any familiar faces.