Horror comedy ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 3’ to release on Diwali 2024


New Delhi: Actor Kartik Aaryan will star in the third instalment of the Bhool Bhulaiyaa franchise to be directed by Anees Bazmee and produced by T-Series, that will release for Diwali 2024. When released in May 2022, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 had made over Rs. 185 crore at the box office.

Bollywood has been betting big on sequels and franchise films in the past few months to cash in on the success of titles such as Bhool Bhulaiya, Heropanti and Ek Villain, among others.

While Aaryan was seen in Bhool Bhulaiya 2 in May, the second parts to period drama KGF and Tiger Shroff’s Heropanti arrived in April. Ekta Kapoor also built on her Ek Villain series with an instalment in July while Zee Studios is planning a sequel to Gadar with Sunny Deol.

Critics and trade experts said the formula may generate some curiosity given the success of previous films but the poor response to recent titles like Bunty Aur Babli 2 suggest forcing a story forward may not work. The other challenge is that Hindi cinema does not have the grandeur and special effects of Hollywood superhero franchises, which such sequels are inspired by.

However, a ‘spiritual successor,’ or a film with a completely different plot or set of actors and only belonging to the same genre as the original, such as a thriller or comedy, has been tough to sell and disappointing to audiences in the past few years, say trade experts. For example, Vidya Balan’s Kahaani 2 could not build on the success of the first instalment even though it featured the same lead actor.

Hollywood sequels and franchise films are usually superhero tales that create large-scale worlds to take the same story forward. The Avengers and Star Wars films are examples.

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