Most people tread the beaten path but some rare ones lead the way. A salute to some people who in 2011 attempted to go where no one else has dared
As much as I am tempted to say that 2011 has been a phenomenal year, it is kind of given considering that the entertainment industry is growing at a breathtaking pace.
However, 2011 does have its fair share of moments which made us proud, moments that made us cringe, moments that made us teary-eyed and moments that made us want to hide under a rock.
Starting from today, till the end of the year, Hitlist will stitch together those moments and talk about the personalities who were instrumental in making them possible. Happy reading.
They say rules are meant to be broken. But not everyone who talks of breaking the norm manages to carve a path of his or her own.
2011, fortunately has seen a powerful set of 'game changers', who have proven to be visionaries in their own might.
From a mainstream actress who proudly showed off her three 'tyre'-tummy, to a superstar who announced the news of becoming a father in a way as ingenuous as most of his movies, here are 2011's rebellious bests...
There's little that hasn't already been said about this woman who changed the face (and body) of a leading lady in Bollywood. Post The Dirty Picture, Vidya Balan came to be known as the 'ballsiest' actor in the industry.
In the past five years, revealing extra ounces of flesh has become as sacrilegious as a lip-lock or a sex-scene back in the 70's. But when Vidya strutted around in micro-minis showing of a jelly-belly, it was more about shedding inhibitions, than clothes.
More so, it was a wake-up call for actresses who belong to a space where success rates are measured by the number of item numbers they bag. "In this film I have celebrated my body and I think we all should," says Vidya.
Trust Aamir Khan's son to come into the world, making a statement. Azad Rao Khan is a probably the quietest Bollywood baby to be delivered, but still he managed to create all the right noises. When proud papa announced his arrival through IVF surrogacy, it was a lesson for many popular couples that still treat the method as a taboo. "This baby is especially dear to us because he was born to us after a long wait and some difficulty," said Aamir.
The Kolaveri chant
A romantic moonlit night, a heartbreak that follows, a glass of scotch and a few tears ingredients that describe the love life of every youngster. Add them in a song, and you've got a number that becomes the anthem of the youth. Some called Kolaveri racist, some others tagged it sexist, some called the language derogatory, and the rest called it a 'passing' craze. But surprising its critics, this Tanglish number (created in a little Chennai studio) left behind the most popular Bollywood hits to emerge as the most downloaded Indian song ever. Says Dhanush, "We created a song to show that angst. We're glad it's become so relatable."
Fire in the belly
Every year there's that one film which both curses and celebrates the unpredictability of life. For 2011, Delly Belly was that film and much more. The dark humour in the film (predominantly in English) resonated not just with the youth but with anyone who understands what it feels like when s*** hits the roof. With no item number, no romantic plot, no real hero or villan, the film defied most Bollywood conventions. It was the first and probably the only time a desi gaali became a chartbuster. "With DK Bose, we mock our flawed selves. None of us are perfect and the song signifies that," said Ram Sampat, the composer of the song. The film gave adult humour a new dimension hinting that our cinema is finally coming of age.
From being the queen of soaps to ruling the big screen, Ekta Kapoor's dramatic transition is as surprising as laudable. Her films are everything her TV soaps are not, and 2011 stands testimony to that. From reviving the dead genre of Bollywood horror with Ragini MMS to providing a fresh perspective on Mumbai's crime scene in Shor in the City to giving us a flavour of the much-mocked upon 80's in The Dirty Picture, she is the one woman producer who has the brains and the b**** to give most others a run for their money.
The 'one' and only
Love it, hate it, but you couldn't ignore it. Shah Rukh Khan's RA.One changed the rules of the marketing game in more ways than one. We saw Mr Khan endorsing everything from bathing soaps to baniyaans, but that does not take away from the fact that this carpet-bombing marketing method ensured the footfalls SRK badly needed. RA.One also became the film with the most advanced visual effects, opening doors for many such ambitious ventures.
The Indian television media spoke out loud when they collectively took a stand to not cover the much-hyped arrival of the Bachchan baby. Though, it was looked upon as unfair regulation of the media, it eventually stood out as an example.
A rather provocative and bold Bengali film called Gandu made all attempts for public screenings at film festivals, despite oppositions from political parties. The film, has now been released online successfully reaching a large chunk of its target audience.
Stephen Speilberg's Tin tin for becoming the highest Hollywood animation grosser in India.
Actresses like Purna Jagannathan and Nargis Fakhri who made their Bollywood debuts post their 30s.