Before I begin the annual snarkado, let’s all gather round the fireplace and take a moment to remember when awards actually meant something – when the Best Film was not the one with the biggest marketing budget, when the Best Actor was not the one who had thrown the biggest diva strop backstage and when nominees for Best Director actually rolled up to a formal awards function in something smarter than ill-fitting jeans and chappals whilst their wives/girlfriends stood beside them looking all dressed up with nowhere to go.
Remember those days? No, nor do I.
For it seems awards have lost their value and any real joy comes from watching someone like Salman Khan or Suresh Grover being let loose and rustling an ego or two in the audience or just the awkwardness central when two people who mutually loathe one another are “accidentally” seated together. So why even bother with a snark fest over the Filmfare Awards this year I hear you ask? (Yes, I can read your mind dear reader).
Well, the Filmfare Awards were the ONE award function that I always looked forward to the most. Getting that awards issue magazine was a treat and in later years, getting hold of a recording of the ceremony was an interesting exercise of calling in favours. Fast forward to aaj kal (nowadays) and pictures, tweets declaring the winners and pointless gossip (“International standards yo – everyone turned up on time!” – shouldn’t they all be punctual anyway?) are available online before the ceremony has even ended.
It also seems a foregone conclusion as to who will win – if it made 100 crore at the box office, however tenuous the link may be, it will win at least one award so that marketing teams can assure themselves that they are far more important than any content. (Horror of horror breaking news – this could even include Grand Masti – gulp!)
But Filmfare have promised a different kind of ceremony this year (no doubt inspired by the Oscars and Golden Globes) with a 3D award (WTF) and Priyanka Chopra and Ranbir Kapoor hosting the event. At this stage, where I can only differentiate award ceremonies by what international standard holy-backless-awesomeness ensemble Deepika Padukone is wearing (not to mention smacking my forehead repeatedly at Ameesha Patel’s inevitable too tight too short combo), any sort of change is welcome, but as I am rather picky, here is my wish list of what I would like popular Hindi film award ceremonies in India to prominently stand for:
(a) To bring back some sort of value and credibility to the awards – reward the talent yo!
(b) A drastic improvement in the numbers enacted by the stars in the ceremony – lip synching and shuffling about to hit songs is all well and good but we want innovative and inspiring LIVE performances, not dancing karaoke sponsored by household cleaning products
(c) Instead of a truncated sequence for telecast, actually show the technical awards being awarded by prominent and popular stars (for instance SRK + DPad gifting Best Sound Design perhaps?), and give due respect by allowing those who may not have 1 million followers on Twitter having their acceptance speeches heard in full
(d) Cut down on bullshitting and jokes that no one outside the sub continent gets for a straight up 90 minute (max 2 hour) ceremony
(e) Everyone making an effort from head to toe –MEN and women, dressed properly. Plus we want an E! style Mani-cam and we want it now so palmologists can also join the fray.
More than a bit puritan I know but I certainly feel these measures would help the awards rediscover that lost fierce (are you listening Filmfare? I am crying. #sunrahoonmain)
Anyway, staying on the soapbox, here are the nominees for the 59th Filmfare Awards with a short summary on who I want to win and who I think will probably win.
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Who I Want To Win: Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani. For those creating a commotion at the back, pipe down bitches. The reason I picked YHJD is that in my not so humble opinion, it doesn’t suffer the curse of the second half (or just the curse of being crap which “expressly” applies to one of the nominees) and as a film, as a whole entire being, worked well for me. The others all had good elements but overall were not consistent throughout and their weaknesses were more pronounced.
Who Will Win: YHJD had a massive marketing budget and the Best Film award might be part of a package deal (yeah I said it) but with Chennai Express making the most money in this category, YJHD might be sobbing into its sequins. But no surprise if poor Milkha is pipped to the post by the fast train whilst Ram Leela and Raanjhanaa go play holi to absolve their sorrows.
Aanand L Rai – Raanjhanaa
Abhishek Kapoor – Kai Po Che
Ayan Mukerji – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra – Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Rohit Shetty – Chennai Express
Sanjay Leela Bhansali – Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Who I Want To Win: I would like Aanand L Rai to win as I liked the way he, er, directed his film. For me, the proof is how it stands up to repeat viewings and seems to realise its creative vision quite fully. Plus his ability to present the delightful Dhanush so wonderfully also bodes well in my circles. I won’t hate any on any of the others if they get it though – yes, Rohit Shetty, I will not rain dance on your hot mess parade.
Who Will Win: Rohit Shetty – money talks yo unless everyone feels snobby in which case Mehra will run past the finish line first (on an unrelated tangent, nice to see how this group of nominees has infinite pun/extended metaphor potential – a “silver lining” of sorts…[smirks])
BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE (MALE)
Dhanush – Raanjhanaa
Farhan Akhtar – Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Hrithik Roshan – Krrish 3
Ranbir Kapoor – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Ranveer Singh – Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Shah Rukh Khan – Chennai Express
Who I Want To Win: Right, grievances first. Why didn’t Ranveer get a nomination for Lootera instead? He can do the whole ADD Romeo with a dandruff problem act in his sleep but doing a tribute to Valium as a smartie pants with tamed hair was harder for him. And even though he can do it in his sleep, Irrfaan should be in there for The Lunchbox (haters can go eat some food from a tiffin, it WAS one of the best films of last year, deal with it).
Praise also be to his staunch principles (stay awake now!) that Aamir wasn’t included (and to think he wouldn’t even have to pay for the award – Dhoom 3 made so much money even that American cop girl could have had an award if her agent took YRF off Call Blocker). Anyway, I say Dhanush deserves this for a marvellous performance and to cause a major upset at office sweepstakes everywhere. Failing that, Ranveer over Farhan – Naseeruddin Shah has a point.
Who Will Win: This is has got Farhan’s name perspiring all over it – the man must have avoided chocolate and cake for a year to get that body. In the game of Abs, Crores and Item Numbers (the filmi Rock Paper and Scissors – do you lot know anything?), Abs beat Crores but combined, they beat everything – even the fast
BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE (FEMALE)
Deepika Padukone – Chennai Express
Deepika Padukone – Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Parineeti Chopra – Shuddh Desi Romance
Shraddha Kapoor – Aashiqui 2
Sonakshi Sinha- Lootera
Sonam Kapoor – Raanjhanaa
Who I Want To Win: First off, props for not giving Kareena, Priyanka or Katrina a look in here – that’s more like it. But then there is Sonam [smacks head with oversized designer bag du jour]. But at time of writing, Sonam may not be attending (
because she won’t win).. Only one winner here – Deepika, Deepika and Deepika. Oh and Deepika and Deepika. Honourable mentions go to Parineeti Chopra (wait, did the selectors think she was Priyanka? Major besharam if so!) and Sonakshi who both deserved nods for their efforts.
Who Will Win: Deepika – a rare confluence of critics, popular opinion and the industry all singing in Lata Mangeshkar nightingale harmony on this one. Also how superstars are born. Take note those who turn up late for an audition to join the circus!
BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE (MALE )
Aditya Roy Kapur – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Anupam Kher – Special 26
Nawazuddin Siddiqui – The Lunchbox
Pankaj Kapur – Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola
Rajkumar Rao – Kai Po Che
Vivek Oberoi – Krrish 3
Who I Want To Win: First off, was Vivek Oberoi acting in Krrish 3? I thought that was upscaled footage from a reality show (Oscillating With The Oberois anyone?). Damn. Otherwise, this is a stellar category and esteemed company to be in. I would give it to Nawazuddin because he was superb and was more a parallel lead than supporting act in my opinion.
Who Will Win: Anupam Kher might get this which wouldn’t be a bad thing or otherwise it is Aditya Roy Kapur as no doubt Filmfare need to pop him on the cover every two weeks and “supporting” him at this stage is a smart move and will keep the Dharma refund qualms at bay.
BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE (FEMALE )
Divya Dutta – Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Kalki Koechlin – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Konkona Sen Sharma – Ek Thi Daayan
Supriya Pathak Kapur – Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Swara Bhaskar – Raanjhanaa
Who I Want To Win: This is the only category where I like all the nominees without exception. The only problem I have is the exclusion Kangana Ranut for Krrish 3 which seems pretty obvious, (Krrish 3 probs “forgot” to contribute to the Filmfare shareholder kitty party – with 500 crore comes a lot of responsibility). For me, it would be Konkona or Swara who should take this home as both went beyond their remit and created characters that were real and conspicuous by their absence when not featured in the film. But in all honesty, for my money, this is the most credible category this year.
Who Will Win: Diyva Dutta for BMB as that was a superb performance and in general, her body of work is always varied and engaging so she deserves a boost in her asking price that such an award can command.
Amit Trivedi – Lootera
Ankit Tiwari, Mithoon and Jeet Ganguly – Aashiqui 2
AR Rahman – Raanjhanaa
Pritam – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Sanjay Leela Bhansali – Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Vishal-Shekhar – Chennai Express
Who I Want To Win: Tough category with so many excellent soundtracks. Personally, the multiplex ho in me says YJHD, the snob says Ranjhanaa and the bank manager of the ceremony says Chennai Express. I’ll go with YJHD because that soundtrack has been rinsed more than sheet at a dhobi and still sounds good. Plus it gave good range y’all.
Who Will Win: Chennai Express if it hasn’t won anything else by this point. Otherwise Aashiqui 2 to prove Uncle Filmfare is relevant to Youngistan and super hip and not remotely being pushed by a music producer behemoth who won’t pay the balance unless awards are awarded
as kindly stated in legal notice.
Amitabh Bhattacharya – Shikayatein – Lootera
Amitabh Bhattacharya – Kabira – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Mithoon – Tum hi ho – Aashiqui 2
Prasoon Joshi – Zinda – Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Swanand Kirkire – Manja – Kai Po Che
Who I Want To Win: Straight up jugal bandi between Kabira and Tum Hi Ho for me with the former having had more air time on my iPod than the latter. Tum Hi Ho is a fab track but Kabira has more sing-a-long verses and for this reason alone, in my book, should win.
Who Will Win: Kabira or Tum Hi Ho with Zinda in the outside lane.
BEST PLAYBACK SINGER (MALE)
Amit Trivedi – Manja- Kai Po Che
Ankit Tiwari – Sunn raha hai na tu – Aashiqui 2
Arijit Singh – Tum hi ho – Aashiqui 2
Benny Dayal – Badtameez dil – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Siddharth Mahadevan – Zinda – Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
Who I Want To Win: Aashiqui 2 has this in the bag as both renditions of both songs were superb – I’m going to dodge this like an awkward Rapid Fire round question and give both Singh and Tiwari a joint award as I can’t decide between the two.
Who Will Win: Siddharth Mahadevan as everyone tries to make out they are so hipster and all listening to the alternative option in hot pants rather than grooving in a tracksuit to the chartbusters. Yawn (at the pretenders that is – Mahadevan sang quite well).
BEST PLAYBACK SINGER (FEMALE)
Chinmayi – Titli – Chennai Express
Monali Thakur – Sawar loon – Lootera
Shalmali Kholgade – Balam pichkari – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
Shreya Ghoshal – Sunn raha hai – Aashiqui 2
Shreya Ghoshal – Nagada – Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-leela
Who I Want To Win: Is Shreya Ghoshal the new Alka Yagnik? Just putting it out there. In any case, she didn’t do it for me in those songs, the picturisation and other paraphernalia did instead. Chinmayi sounded beautiful in Titli (the only high point for me in the train film) and Thakur in Lootera was also a joy. But I got to give this to the husky Kholgade who made last year’s earworm so likeable and throwing in that touch of throatiness in what should have been smooth as silk with a sequin border autocue heaven – I do love a rebel.
Who Will Win: Shreya Ghoshal for Ram Leela or Aashiqui 2 – Uncle Filmfare tends to treat this category as an afterthought (yup, I am still butt hurting for Harshdeep Kaur not being included for Heer from Jab Tak Hai Jaan last year) and this award is a diplomacy masterstroke way of mollifying big films that did pay up on time and didn’t get the award they wanted. At least they didn’t go home empty handed, na? #desietiquette
So, do you agree or disagree?
You can comment (for free I hasten to add!) or join in the debate on Twitter using the hashtag #snarkado2014
I’m off to hide in Uncle Taz’s lair (see here and here to get the joke), don’t forget you’ll be able to watch the awards on telecast and follow the action on Filmfare’s social media platforms. See you on the front row!