In the times when a holiday release comes at a premium, a threat of a clash on a big day always looms large and situations turn out to be rather ugly eventually, it is actually quite surprising that there is absolute silence when it comes to Bollywood biggies arriving on major holidays in 2018. Considering the fact that from the planning perspective Bollywood has come a long way from where it was till half a decade back and majority of release dates are not just locked but also met when it comes to a big budget arrival, superstars are not really scampering for a slot in the coming year.
At last count, only eight films have been announced to arrive on major holidays of 2018. The key word here is ‘announced’ since except for one, rest of these films has not even gone on floors. As a matter of fact there are only five films for which even the shooting schedule has been finalized to the T, whereas the First Look poster of only three films has actually been unveiled.
This, when there are number of holidays that are still waiting to be grabbed and surprisingly not finding any takers. Let’s take a look at the holiday season of 2018 and where exactly are these seven releases placed.
January 26, 2018 [Republic Day]
2.0 – The newest entry into 2018, the Rajinikanth and Akshay Kumar starrer was earlier planned for Diwali 2017 arrival. However, post production and VFX meant a shift ahead to the Republic Day weekend. In a way, it is only apt that the Shankar directed sci-fi affair is releasing as per the new schedule since Akshay Kumar pretty much owns the Republic day slot, his last couple of releases being Baby and Airlift, both of which were successful.
Aiyaary – First Look of the Manoj Bajpayee and Sidharth Malhotra starrer has been unveiled by Neeraj Pandey very recently. A surprise indeed since the project was put together in total secrecy; it has now occupied a slot for itself right at the start of the year. For director Neeraj Pandey, this is going to be another Republic Day arrival after Akshay Kumar starrer Baby. The film is expected to be a dramatic thriller.
Chandamama Door Ke – The Sushant Singh Rajput and Madhavan starrer had been announced for Republic Day arrival quite some time back. A space travel thriller, it is a dream project of Lahore director Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan. Since the film is a biggie, it should ideally be going on floors pretty soon. One waits for that to happen since Sushant has also announced another thriller for 2018 – Romeo Akbar Walter.
Five – Nothing but the title, producers [Sundeep Singh, Bhushan Kumar, Omung Kumar] and director [Omung Kumar] of the film are currently known. There were murmurs of Akshay Kumar being a part of the project but nothing eventually came out of it and everyone associated with the film denied that progress as well. Currently, Omung is anyways busy with the making of Sanjay Dutt starrer Bhoomi.
Tailpiece: By no means would each of the four films eventually arrive together at the Box Office. At least two, if not three films would move ahead and hence there won’t be much scampering or heart burn.
Gold – Akshay Kumar is continuing to occupy his Independence Day slot after Brothers , Rustom  and Toilet – Ek Prem Katha . He has announced Gold, a biopic based on India’s ‘gold medal’ victory at the Olympics. The First Look poster of the film has been unveiled too and Reema Kagti would be going through change of genre too after Honeynoon Travels Pvt. Ltd. and Talaash
Tailpiece: An Akshay Kumar film would definitely arrive on this date. If there is a change in plan for Gold, he would bring in something else as a back-up. He had one in place this year (Toilet – Ek Prem Katha) when Crack moved out.
November 7, 2018 [Diwali]
One of the most awaited film of the year; it has been in news practically every day since its arrival. Aamir Khan has already started doing his thing by getting clicked at the shows, airports, gatherings, parties and media events in his get up for the film. Moreover, with Amitabh Bachchan in there as well, the film has become even bigger. There are huge expectations from YRF and Vijay Krishna Acharya after Dhoom 3.
Tailpiece: 100% arriving. Period.
December 21, 2018 [Christmas season]
Shah Rukh Khan‘s next with Aanand L. Rai – This is set to be one Shah Rukh Khan biggie that is slated to be one of the most talked about arrival in 2018. While he is going all out already to make sure that it turns out to be ‘The film of 2018’, there is a lot at stake for Aanand L. Rai as well who is putting more than three years of his life after Tanu Weds Manu Returns  to go all out on this one.
Krrish 4 – When things were heating up around Kaabil, filmmaker Rakesh Roshan announced that he did have a germ of an idea for Krrish 4. He in fact even announced it for December 21 arrival. However, later he did mention that it would be unethical for him to bring his film on this date since Shah Rukh Khan was already arriving, and hence would change his plans and move on to a different date.
Tailpiece: All of that was before things turned ugly between Raees and Kaabil. Ever since then, there has been no new development. It is going to be a one long wait to see what eventually happens. What is sure though is the clash would certainly not take place.
Major national holidays waiting to be grabbed:
March 2, 2018 [Holi]
March 30, 2018 [Good Friday]
June 15, 2018 [Eid]
October 19, 2018 [Dusshehra]
Now these are major holidays indeed, especially Eid, Holi and Dusshehra which can prove to be goldmine for many a filmmaker. As a matter of fact, even though Salman Khan hasn’t announced a film yet for Eid, no other superstar has yet put on an eye on this spot since Salman (barring only one year in the recent past) has always been arriving on Eid. While it is still understandable that this could well be a courtesy call from other actors and filmmakers to keep the date untouched, one wonders what’s stopping them for eyeing the other available big holidays.
This isn’t all as in addition to these national holidays, there are some partial holidays [Ram Navami, Guru Nanak birthday etc.] as well which would give leverage to Bollywood flicks certain states in the country. Well, it is right up there for the grabs. All that is needed now is some major biggies to be put together and slotted for arrival on these dates to make it a star studded holiday season all over again in 2018.