Mirroring The Industry: Pathan, Tiger, Vikram Vedha and the impact of strong villain in the elevating the hero

Updated on Mar 22, 2021 09:55 AM IST  |  490.9K
   
Mirroring The Industry: Pathan, Tiger, Vikram Vedha and the impact of strong villain in the elevating the hero
Mirroring The Industry: Pathan, Tiger, Vikram Vedha and the impact of strong villain in the elevating the hero
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It has been ages since we got iconic negative character. We need to go back to the  90s, 80s and 70s to think of the iconic villains with Mogambo, Shakaal, Gabbar Singh, Bawant Rai, Dong, Teja (Zanjeer), Kancha Cheena, Maharani, Ballu (Khalnayak) and many more. The multi-starrers are back in the fashion, with multiple universes in the making. The era of multi-starrers has also got the concept of hero vs villain back. Be it John Abraham playing a dreaded gangster against Emraan Hashmi in the soon to release Mumbai Saga, or the actor playing a tech savvy, street smart character of gun mafia in the Siddharth Anand directed Pathan, pitted against Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone. It extends further to Emraan Hashmi playing an out and out grey character engaging in the fight of ideology with Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif in Tiger 3 or finally, the yet to be announced Vikram Vedha remake, which is said to be a fight between Hrithik Roshan and Saif Ali Khan.

Over the last 5 years, the concept of villain had just taken a back seat in Bollywood, and finally it seems to be coming back. While the hero is presented as hero, the impact is missing because the negative characters lack the punch. According to an insider, Aditya Chopra is weaving his spy universe with the concept of making the villain way more powerful than the hero. That’s what will make the victory of Tiger and Pathan even bigger. The conflict should be such that it calls for the culmination of two worlds to combat the baddie; He is a firm believer of the old school thought process - Powerful villain, makes the hero even more powerful.

Aditya Chopra is weaving his spy universe with the concept of making the villain way more powerful than the hero. That’s what will make the victory of Tiger and Pathan even bigger
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The original Vikram Vedha was a cat and mouse chase between a cop and a gangster, with elements of thrill and action. The screenplay was woven in a way that the two characters engage in the game of one upmanship. And well, that’s exactly what the Hindi remake will also have to offer with certain tweaking and both the characters rubbing off each other’s energy. A Vedha is incomplete without Vikram and a Vikram is incomplete without Vedha. The beauty of the film lies in the fact that neither the hero, nor the villain is taken for granted. And the fight of equal leads to the adrenaline rush. It’s again a scenario of a strong villain, making the audience root for the hero.

The idea of a big name stepping in for a negative part against the counterpart does not just help the film in reaching out to a wider audience with the idea of “war” between the two leads, but also elevates the impact of writing the script. The big names push the writer to develop both the characters better, as compared to the conventional norm of a rather smaller name stepping into the negative shoes, which at times results in the writers taking the particular character for granted. The idea of two heroes being pitted against each other also leads to the actors taking their part seriously, pushing boundaries to deliver a commendable performance and not get overshadowed by the counterpart. Well, it’s a win and win scenario, when it comes to powerful hero vs powerful villain in all aspects – creatively, aesthetically as well as commercially.

The idea of two heroes being pitted against each other also leads to the actors taking their part seriously, pushing boundaries to deliver a commendable performance and not get overshadowed by the counterpart.
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The two-hero concept doesn’t just have to be the casting of big names. There are some actors, who may not sell independently, but their addition to the ensemble of the film as a villain adds weightage to the project. While Nawaz as a standalone actor might not be a big pull among the audience, his addition to Kick as the negative lead, elevated the film and created the hype. Likewise, for Radhe, the addition of Randeep Hooda has created the curiosity due to battle royal between Salman and Randeep, who is a credible name and a phenomenal actor. Emraan Hashmi’s entry in Tiger 3 has also created the right noise despite his long absence from the film and the otherwise not so good track record of his at the box-office over the last few years. Why? Well, Emraan is a phenomenal actor and a credible name. And well, John in Pathan makes it a mega project with Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone, given the fact that there is an audience for solo John Abraham films up in the market, and his addition just escalates the already huge reach of the espionage thriller. 

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Vikram Vedha too might mark the collaboration of Hrithik and Saif. While the former is a bonafide superstar, the later is one of the most credible actors today and is a definite value addition to any project he is a part of. A Tanhaji might not have left the same impact, if not for Saif Ali Khan in the negative lead pitted against Ajay Devgn. Likewise, the presence of Saif in Adipurush makes it an exciting fight between Prabhas and Saif. The real life Sanju getting into the tussle with the reel life Sanju, Ranbir Kapoor, in Shamshera is yet another formidable hero vs villain combo waiting to explore on the big screen, whereas  Ek Villain Returns is a war between two villains, John and Arjun Kapoor.

For Radhe, the addition of Randeep Hooda has created the curiosity due to battle royal between Salman and Randeep, who is a credible name and a phenomenal actor
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Even Master for that matter, while a solo Vijay film is enough to create hysteria, the packaging of the film as Vijay vs Vijay Sethupathi, did wonders for the film and pushed the hype at underheard level, even in the midst of a pandemic.  A superstar vs a credible actor is a combo to bank upon, and in best interest of the film industry, also essential to bring the villainous characters back in business. Remember, there won’t be a hero, if there is no evil. You can worship a hero, only if he stands tall against the evil.

Also Read| Mirroring The Industry: The relevance of music in longevity of a superstar, and adverse impact of recreations

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