Friday saw the release of the trailer of Housefull 4, one of the most awaited films this year. However, the hype associated with the fourth instalment in the franchise didn’t quite seem worth the wait. Thanks to its typical crass jokes that – just like the three previous films. The only new twist in Housefull 4 is a “reincarnation” storyline, which will show two parallel lives of each character – one set in 1419, another in 2019.
WHAT IS THE PLOT OF HOUSEFULL 4?
Housefull 4 stars Akshay Kumar, Riteish Deshmukh, Bobby Deol, Kriti Sanon, Kriti Kharbanda and Pooja Hegde in the lead roles, and every actor has been given two roles; one from Sitamgarh 1419, and the other from London 2019. Now, it is yet to be seen if the characters from 1419 have a face-off with their reincarnated selves when the 3 couples from London land in Sitamgarh. Because “history repeats itself”, apparently. This is Housefull 4, is mein kuch bhi ho sakta hai.
Since years, Bollywood has been obsessed with the ‘Ek Ke Saath Ek Free’ formula in films and it has mostly proven a full paisa-vasool game as far as the box office is concerned. Be it reincarnation of the protagonist or just a ‘bichhda hua bhai/behen’, the idea of two lookalike characters, and watching them pitted against each other, has always been fascinating to watch.
Or sometimes, the comedy of errors with a single actor in a different set of roles is deliberately included to create a sense of confusion among the audience. But after watching the trailer of Housefull 4, it seems that director Farhad Samji has taken that formula to the next level by giving double roles to each lead character in the film; a move that has left fans confused as to ‘who is marrying whom’. That too, with 600 years in between.
As in, in one scene, Akshay’s character is trying to kiss Kriti (Sanon) because “punar janam hua hai”, but in 2019, he is marrying Kriti’s sister. Confused, right?
WHAT ABOUT THEIR CHARACTERS?
In 1419, Akshay is essaying the role of a prince, Bala, who wants to marry Kriti Sanon’s character, a princess, in the film. But in 2019, he is playing Harry, who realises that everyone has had a punar janam and tries to reunite each character with their lovers, including himself.
Likewise, in 1419, Riteish is playing Bangdu Maharaj, a classical dancer, and in 2019, he is playing Akshay’s friend Roy.
Bobby Deol, who is a new addition to the Housefull franchise, is bringing back memories of his father Dharmendra, literally, with his “Dharamputra” look. Son of Dharam, get it?
But after 600 years, Bobby is “London Ka Max”.
Just like them, the leading ladies are also all reincarnations.
THE DOUBLE ROLE FORMULA IN BOLLYWOOD
Many actors in Bollywood have played double roles to toy with their level of versatility in the past, but Housefull 4 seems the “baap” of all double roles. As you gear up for Housefull 4, which releases this Diwali, we give you 10 memorable double roles from Bollywood.
1. SHAH RUKH KHAN IN FAN
Shah Rukh Khan, who is not signing films after his last debacle Zero, appeared in a double role in many films in his career spanning nearly three decades. Some of the notable ones are Duplicate (1998), Om Shanti Om (2007) and 2016’s Fan. In Maneesh Sharma’s directorial venture Fan, SRK was seen in two different characters; Aryan Khanna, a filmstar, and Gaurav, Aryan’s doppelganger and biggest fan.
2. VARUN DHAWAN IN JUDWAA 2
Before Varun Dhawan introduced his fans to his “judwaa” characters in David Dhawan’s film Judwaa 2, Salman Khan had already experimented with two roles in the original Judwaa. In the new version, which was a frame-by-frame remake of Salman’s Judwaa, thanks to the same director, Varun entertained the audience with his two characters – Raja and Prem Malhotra, who are separated at birth. Just like the 90s Salman film.
3. KANGANA RANAUT IN TANU WEDS MANU RETURNS
“Mhara naam Kusum Sanghvani, yo mhari saheli Pinky, main Ramjas College Delhi University me padhu su, sports quote te admission leya, National level ki athlete su, jila Jhajjar, 12:45:07 aur phone number main daun ko naa.” Remember this dialogue from the film in which we saw Kangana Ranaut’s character Datto?
While Datto’s portrayal with the Haryanvi accent was applauded by critics and the audience, watching her as Tanuja (R Madhavan’s onscreen wife in Tanu Weds Manu) was also a treat for her fans. Two Kanganas in one film! That was something, right? Kangana also went on to win a Best Actress National Film Award for her portrayal of Datto and Tanuja in the film.
4. SALMAN KHAN IN PREM RATAN DHAN PAAYO
After Judwaa, Salman Khan played two identical characters once again, in Sooraj Barjatya’s 2015 film Prem Ratan Dhan Paayo. In the first half, Salman was seen in the role of Yuvraj Vijay Singh, a prince; and in the second half, as Prem Dilwale, a love guru and stage actor.
5. SHAHID KAPOOR IN KAMINEY
Shahid Kapoor, who made his debut with Ishq Vishk, was typecast in his boy-next-door roles in several films before he signed Vishal Bhardwaj’s Kaminey. From a lisping simpleton to a drastically different character, Charlie and Guddu, Shahid aced both his roles and proved his versatility in the film.
6. AAMIR KHAN IN DHOOM 3
Aamir Khan seemed a little too chocolate-boyish to be a villain in Dhoom 3, the third instalment in the Dhoom franchise. Yet, he took that chance and played two characters in Dhoom 3. Aamir essayed the role of twin brothers Sahir (a swift acrobat and robber) and his mentally-challenged brother Samar, who stammers a lot. Both the brothers fall in love with the same woman, Aaliya, played by Katrina Kaif, resulting in a conflict.
7. AKSHAY KUMAR IN ROWDY RATHORE
“Jo main bolta hoon, woh main karta hoon, aur jo main nahi bolta, wo mai definitely karta hoon”. Remember Akshay’s two characters, ASP Vikram Rathore and Shiva in Rowdy Rathore? The only difference in their appearance was their moustache. In the film, Shiva, a thief, replaces disciplined police officer Rathore in the second half as the latter is hospitalised for his head injury. Everyone in the film gets confused with his personality, including Akshay’s love interest Sonakshi Sinha.
8. RAJINIKANTH IN ROBOT
Rajinikanth portrayed the role of Chitti, a robot, and its creator Dr Vaseegaran, a struggling scientist in Shankar’s 2010 directorial venture Robot. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan played Rajinikanth’s love interest in the film. The twist in the film comes about when Vaseegaran adds human emotions to Chitti, and the robot falls in love with Aishwarya’s character Sana. It is hard to imagine someone other than Thalaiva in these two out-of-the-box roles; a fact that he proved in 2.0 too, the sequel to Robot.
9. ARJUN KAPOOR IN AURANGZEB
Arjun Kapoor is also among the Bollywood actors who have played two different roles in the same film. After making his Bollywood debut with Ishaqzaade in 2012, Arjun played twin brothers in Atul Sabharwal’s directorial venture Aurangzeb in 2013. In Aurangzeb, Arjun’s characters, Ajay and Vishal, drift apart because of their parents’ (Jackie Shroff and Tanvi Azmi) separation. While Jackie raises one son; the other stays with Azmi in the film. Years later, they meet each other and realise they are twins.
10. PARESH RAWAL IN ANDAZ APNA APNA
Who can forget Ram Gopal Bajaj and his twin brother Shyam Gopal Bajaj aka Teja from Aamir Khan and Salman Khan-starrer Andaz Apna Apna? If you are a fan of this 1994 film by Rajkumar Santoshi, then you will remember how these brothers (both played by Paresh Rawal) are caught in the battle of identities in this out-and-out comedy. While Ram is a business tycoon, his brother Shyam is a crook who wants to kill the former’s daughter Raveena (played by Raveena Tandon herself) and take all his wealth.
Hindi cinema has seen many actors taking the double role route in films: Sanjeev Kumar (Angoor), Amitabh Bachchan (Don), Dev Anand (Hum Dono), Hema Malini (Seeta Aur Geeta), Dilip Kumar (Ram Aur Shyam) are some of the actors who have nailed their dual roles.
Will the Housefull 4 cast be able to ace the double role game? We will find out this Diwali.