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With the development of a parallel and more realistic drama on OTT platforms, Bollywood has also decided to jump on the same bandwagon. That is evident from the choices made in selecting the script and platform for a movie in the past few months.
The Big Bull is a movie featuring Abhishek Bacchan, portraying the central fictional character’s journey, Hemant Shah, from rags to riches. The movie is said to depict actual events with fictional characters as a mouthpiece. The movie protagonist, Hemant Shah, is a fictional character, based majorly and not wholly on Harshad Mehta.
Owing to the web series ‘Scam 1992’, based on Harshad Mehta’s life, the Big Bull has expectedly attracted the reportage of comparisons between the two OTT releases. The netizens on various social media platforms have already started bashing the movie cast and crew for plagiarizing Scam 1992.
Apart from the negative reportage and social media activism, The title track has also captivated millions’ attention. The title track is the reworked version of an already popular song, Yalgaar, originally vocalized by YouTuber CarryMinati. Being a movie and not a web series, The film has an angle of commercialization and dramatization for apparent reasons.
The Big Bull also marks the third release of Abhishek Bachhan’s OTT release. He made his debut on the digital streaming platforms through Breathe: Into the Shadows, released in July on Amazon Prime. And it was followed by his second OTT release of Ludo, a multi-starer movie on Netflix.
Also, the Big Bull is Abhishek’s first movie on an OTT platform where he would play a protagonist.
In this blog, we would address the similarities and differences between Big Bull & Scam 1992.
Also, the debate around the theatrical and OTT release on the movie would get discussed.
The Big Bull and Scam 1992
Scam 1992, a web series released in October of the last year, puts Harshad Mehta’s story and the most significant financial fraud of the ’90s before its viewers. The ten episodes’ biopic-cum-web series released on Sony Liv received several critical acclaim and accolades from a broad spectrum of cinema critics.
Hansal Mehta’s directorial, featuring Pratik Gandhi as Harshad Mehta, revolves around the financial fraud done and his journey. The series is centralized to Harshad Mehta’s cunning thought process and ways of exploiting the financial system’s loopholes and taking advantage.
The two similarities that one cannot turn his eyes away from are the character traits of Harshad Mehta and the Financial Fraud of the ’90s. In the above statement, we mentioned only two similarities because, unlike Scam 1992, Big Bull is a movie constructed to be aspirational rather than a biopic.
To Depict the life journey of Harshad Mehta in the most authentic spirit, the cast and crew members of the series were compelled to defictionalize the whole plot. It is so because often, it gets observed that a portrayal of an individual’s life fades away into oblivion because of commercialization and fictionalization.
While on the other hand, as per the statement of Abhishek Bacchan, Big Bull’s plot has been intentionally dramatized and made flawed. The protagonist in the Big Bull has been displayed as a flawed character to ensure the connection with its viewers’ reality.
According to the director, Kookie Gulati, the Big Bull’s central theme is to remain an aspirational movie depicting the journey from rags to riches.
The addition of songs and standards of characterization in the Big Bull sets the movie poles apart from Scam 1992. The most important factor that one should consider while comparing the two cinematic works is their running time.
Scam 1992, being a ten-episode series, gets more screen time as compared to Big Bull. Hence the story of the series was written, directed, and progressed accordingly. While Big Bull, originally supposed to get a theatrical release, was directed and written according to 2-3 hours’ time limits.
CarryMinati’s Yalgaar as the title track of a movie
Although named the ‘BIG BULL Title Track,’ CarryMinati’s song Yalgaar is used in the movie. The song got released on Thursday and has maintained the position on the top charts. And justifies the hype around it because of the contribution of the popular YouTuber.
Ajey Nagar, popularly known as CarryMinati, is the most subscribed content creator on YouTube in India. The song that got reworked as the title track of Big Bull was already a popular hit, sung by CarryMinati. And was produced initially as a response to his haters during the Youtube vs. TikTok Controversy.
According to Abhishek Bacchan, the song Yalgaar wasn’t supposed to be in the film initially.
And it was Ajay Devgn who ideated the usage of the song as the title track of the movie.
Henceforth, the song got tweaked and used as the title track, with the vocals sung by CarryMinati on Wily Frenzy’s beats, his brother.
OTT Release Vs. Theatrical Release
The release of Big Bull on 8th April 2021 on Disney+Hotstar has sparked the debate between OTT & the theatrical release of movies amid the pandemic. The Big Bull was initially scheduled to get released on the silver screens in October 2020. But because of the pandemic, followed by lockdown, the film got shifted to an OTT platform.
The pandemic has made several anticipated movies like Gulabo-Sitabo & Ludo get an OTT release.
Owing to which many actors have started mentioning a NO OTT RELEASE clause in their contracts to get a theatrical release. Several movie industry producers have also voiced their opinions and impressed the coexistence of releases on both platforms.
Amid all the debates, the Big Bull featuring Abhishek Bacchan, Ileana D’Cruz, Sohum Shah, Nikita Dutta & Saurabh Shukla is set to release on 8th April 2021 on Disney+Hotstar.