Buzzine Bollywood's Top Ten Picks Include Sonakshi Sinha, Omkar Das Manipuri & More
While 2010 may have been a disappointing year overall for A-list actors and at the box office, Bollywood saw an infusion of fresh young talent making debuts, both on and off the screen, throughout the calendar year. Films such as Dabangg, Peepli [Live], Love Sex Aur Dhokha, Aisha, Udaan, and Tere Bin Laden, among others, introduced us to a batch of names who may soon become the biggest (and most common) names in Bollywood.
Indeed, the time is nearing where names such as Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Kareena Kapoor, Abhishek Bachchan, and Aishwarya Rai will be looking to this next batch of talent to continue carrying the torch into the next generation of Hindi cinema.
According to various news reports, Bollywood saw somewhere between 180 and 190 original releases in 2010, with another 50 to 60 films (such as Endhiran) imported from other film industries. Of the Hindi theatrical releases, an estimated 150 actors and directors reportedly popped their Bollywood cherries since January 1st. Among those, a handful have made quite the first impression and, so long as they do not drop the ball, should have a long-lasting career as a Bollywood film star (or director).
So who, exactly, are these promising stars of tomorrow who made their debuts in 2010? Buzzine Bollywood takes a look at this year’s Top 10 Breakout Stars of Hindi cinema as unanimously decided by this committee of one.
1. Sonakshi Sinha (Dabanng)
A two-year veteran of Lamke Fashion Week, the sister of Luv Sinha and daughter of Shatrughan Sinha not only has impeccable screen presence, but Sonakshi also had the luck of starring as the lead female in one of Bollywood’s highest grossing films in Dabangg.
2. Omkar Das Manipuri (Peepli [Live])
You must be doing something right when you audition for a minor role in your Bollywood debut but end up snatching the lead role from Aamir Khan...in a film Mr. Khan himself produced. That is what happened to Omkar, who memorably portrayed Natha, a poor farmer-turned-lead news item, in Peepli [Live].
3. Amrita Puri (Aisha)
The daughter of an Indian banker, Amrita’s breakout debut performance in Aisha was described by critics as a “real surprise” and “heartwarming.” Very rarely is one’s debut film as career-defining as Aisha was for Amrita.
4. Raj Kumar Yadav (Love, Sex Aur Dhokha)
While he did not headline the film, Raj Kumar Yadav's masterful performance was perhaps the most pivotal character in LSD--one of Bollywood’s most positively surprising productions of 2010. Take away Raj’s performance and LSD loses a great deal of its charm and luster.
5. Padmapriya (Striker)
Okay, Padmapriya was already an established Southie star prior to debuting in Bollywood’s 2010 release of Striker, yet her performance as a sultry but romantic lover of the film’s hero was crucial to the film’s plot development. Even more, Padmapriya convincingly portrayed her character with such ease, it is a wonder why she has not been offered even more Bollywood roles.
6. Shalini Vatsa (Peepli [Live])
Shalini’s portrayal of an illiterate mother of three who was also an over-the-top, loud-mouthed, ill-tempered and demanding wife of a poor village farmer, whose strong stereotypically Indian rants virtually drove her husband to contemplate suicide for his family’s benefit, may have been one of the most memorable performances of 2010.
7. Ali Zafar (Tere Bin Laden)
Pakistani pop music star turned Bollywood actor Ali Zafar effortlessly portrayed a struggling journalist who tries to con the world with an ambitious yet devious plot. The performance opened the door for Ali in Hindi cinema, including a substantive appearance in Yash Chopra’s Mere Brother Ki Dulhan.
8. Rajat Barmecha (Udaan)
Industry insiders and Bollywood fans alike were clamoring over Rajat’s debut, who quickly made an impression with his strong screen presence and command of character.
9. Ranveer Singh (Band Baaja Baaraat)
The first solo lead actor of a Yash Raj film, Ranveer’s debut in this month’s release of Band Baaja Baaraat is quite the dashing actor with a charming personality. Helping his cause is his comedic timing and ability to carry dialogue.
10. Pradhuman Singh (Tere Bin Laden)
It is not easy playing an Osama Bin Laden look-alike, but that is exactly what Pradhuman was cast to do in this satirical spoof. Indeed, Pradhuman’s Bin Laden makeover was so convincing, his real-life girlfriend did not recognize him.
- Lisa Hayden (Aisha): Foreign model expected to land significant roles in Bollywood.
- Anshuman Jha (Love, Sex Aur Dhokha): Potential to be a regular lead of rom-coms.