Ever since he made his debut with ‘Ishaqzaade’ (2012), Arjun Kapoor has had a career filled with several highs and a couple of lows. The biggest success of his career, so far, has been ‘2 States’, a film which also marked his entry into the 100 crore club. While one expected his career to skyrocket after that film, the films he chose to do after that showed his willingness to experiment with different roles and genres but not all of them could strike gold at the box-office.
After ‘2 States’, he was seen in ‘Finding Fanny’, a fairly offbeat film directed by Homi Adajania. The film was never really expected to be the kind that could become a major success at the box-office but it did bring in some critical acclaim to him and raked in enough to cover the costs. In ‘Ki & Ka’, he played a role which a lot of actors probably would not have liked to – an IIM graduate who chooses to be a house husband. The R Balki film was aimed at the multiplex-visiting crowd and proved to be a decent earner at the box-office. His next film ‘Half Girlfriend’, based on the bestselling book of the same name by Chetan Bhagat, turned out to be an average grosser at the box-office and his second release of 2017, ‘Mubarakan’, one of the most commercial films of his career, met with a similar fate.
‘Namaste England’ was his only release of 2018. In the sequel-in-spirit to the 2007 hit ‘Namastey England’, he played a role which was originally written for Akshay Kumar. Parineeti Chopra and him had delivered a hit in their first outing together (‘Ishaqzaade’) but this time, they cuold not recreate the magic of their first film and this Vipul Shah directed romantic drama turned out to be one of the biggest disappointments of 2018.
2019 is a very important year for Arjun as he has three important films lined up for release this year. The first film ‘India’s Most Wanted’ hits the theatre today. The director of the film is Rajkumar Gupta whom Arjun was supposed to collaborate on the film adaptation of ‘Revolution 2020’ way back in 2011. The film ever happened and the two of them finally collaborated on this espionage thriller which seems like a gritty affair.
Dibakar Banerjee’s ‘Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar’, bankrolled by Yash Raj Films, should be Arjun’s second release this year. The film has been ready for a while and a couple of release dates had been announced in the past, only to be deferred for different reasons. Though Arjun and Parineeti’s pairing in ‘Ishaqzaade’ worked wonders for YRF, the failure of ‘Namaste England’ has not really helped this film gather some steam. From what one has heard, this seems to be Dibakar’s most commercial film till date and one definitely waits for the release date to be announced for this one!
Ashutosh Gowariker has not made a successful film since ‘Jodhaa Akbar’. His last three films ‘What’s Your Raashee?’, ‘Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey’ and ‘Mohenjo Daro’ could not draw in the audience to the theatres. Yet, he continues to be one of the most respected filmmakers around and one of the few to dabble in historical subjects. In ‘Panipat’, Arjun essays the role of Maratha warrior Sadashivrao Bhau, a prominent historical figure. It is, reportedly, one of his most physically challenging roles till date.
In the past, several actors have seen the best phase of their careers after going through a lull or a while. The three films are as diverse from each other as they can be and have generated interest because of the people associated with them. Now, one just hopes these choices prove to be beneficial for Arjun and get him back in the reckoning in a major way.