And the best Bollywood actress for 2012 is... Priyanka Chopra or Kareena Kapoor?

Our resident critics pick the best and the worst from the Indian film industry for the year

Let’s address the white elephant in the room first.
 
Even Bollywood’s acclaimed actors such as Aamir Khan, Ajay Devgn and Abhay Deol admit that the awards season rat race is simply a game of nepotism and soothing ruffled feathers.
 
Credibility is shown the door in lieu of volatile egos and popular stars who are willing to shake a hip on stage in exchange for an award and a bag load of cash.
 
This week’s Big Star Entertainments Awards certainly offered the complete package in terms of starry faces and red carpet glamour; yet, the awards night also opened up the Pandora’s Box of credibility when many taking to social media platforms to question the need to award a Best Actor or Actress across categories such as romance, comedy, action, popularity and critics.
 
For all you know, we probably missed a few categories.
 
Meanwhile, films such as ‘Don 2’, which was released in 2011, made the nominations cut, when this year isn’t even over considering ‘Dabangg 2’ – slated to be one of the biggest of 2012 – is yet to release later this week.
 
Disregarding what will be yet another year of lopsided award winners as per general consensus, Emirates 24|7 puts together its own predictions and a few categories that will make 2012 a cracker of a year for Indian cinema. 
 
Best Actor in a Negative role
 
Nominations:

Sanjay Dutt for ‘Agneepath’
Saswata Chatterjee for ‘Kahaani’
Tigmanshu Dhulia for ‘Gangs of Wasseypur Part 1 & 2’
Pitobash Tripathy for ‘Shanghai’
Manoj Bajpai for ‘Chakravyuh’

 
Our winner: Hands down, Tigmanshu Dhulia’s straitlaced, yet menacing Ramadhir Singh in, both, ‘Gangs of Wasseypur Part 1 & 2’, saw the actor thrill audiences with his realistic, yet rustic appeal that had goosebumps running down our arms in some scenes.
 
A certain win here for talent, but we won’t be surprised that Sanjay Dutt walks away with the award for Best Villain for ‘Agneepath’. That’s the way the cookie crumbles in Bollywood.
 
Best Actor in a Comic role
 
Nominations:

Boman Irani for ‘Shirin Farhad Ki Nikal Padi’
Rajesh Sharma for ‘Luv Shuv Te Chicken Khurana’
Paresh Rawal for ‘Oh My God’
Annu Kapoor for ‘Vicky Donor’
Ranjeet for ‘Houseful 2’

 
Our winner: Paresh Rawal has been a recipient of this award many times and we aren’t surprised, because he gets the applause yet again for his exceptional satire in this socially relevant film.
 
No actor could have done justice to the character of Kanji Lalji Mehta quite so beautifully.
 
Naturally, glamour stakes will dictate otherwise, and if the Big Star Entertainment Awards are anything to go by, then Abhishek Bachchan is bound to pick up the awards this year for over hyped, ‘Bol Bachchan’.
 
Best Actor Female
 
Nominations:

Deepika Padukone for ‘Cocktail’
Vidya Balan for ‘Kahaani’
Priyanka Chopra for ‘Barfi!’
Sridevi for ‘English Vinglish’
Kareena Kapoor for ‘Heroine’

 
Our winner: Needless to say, Priyanka Chopra will walk away with the awards this season for her sensitive portrayal of the autistic Jhilmil. This is probably one of those few times that a glamorous star actually deserves the Best Actress award.
 
However, we would like to give a special mention to Sridevi for shining on screen so beautifully after nearly 15 years.
 
Best Actor Male
 
Nominations:

Ranbir Kapoor for ‘Barfi!’
Nawazuddin Siddiqui for ‘Gangs of Wasseypur 2’
Manoj Bajpai for ‘Gangs of Wasseypur 1’
Irrfan Khan for ‘Paan Singh Tomar’
Aamir Khan for ‘Talaash’

 
Our winner: After much heated debate in the Emirates 24|7 office, Manoj Bajpai finally edged out Irrfan Khan’s sensitive portrayal in the biopic of the same name, to win top prize.
 
‘Gangs’ is hands down, Bajpai’s finest performance yet, taking up back to a once superstar in the making in ‘Satya’s’ Bikhoo Matre.
 
No character has ever been so beautifully goofy, deliciously scary and poignantly vulnerable – all in the same film. But Bajpai somehow manages to marry all three emotions together to create the character of Sardar Khan come alive so menacingly on screen.
 
Kudos.
 
Needless to say, only special awards will probably come the actor’s way; with the Best Actor gong only ringing for the more popular star such as ‘Barfi’s!’ Ranbir Kapoor.
 
Best Film
 
Nominations:

‘Paan Singh Tomar’
‘Shanghai’
‘Gangs of Wasseypur 1& 2’
‘Kahaani’
‘Barfi!’

 
Our winner: And once again, Anurag Kashyap wins this list hands down with ‘Gangs of Wasseypur 1& 2’ as our Best Film for the year.
 
Before you argue that these are two films, we just want to say that technically it was shot as one feature, but due to time constraints was split into two.
 
The film offers the complete package: gritty, yet sensitive; violent, yet peppered with dark humour.
 
There are so many shades of grey that at some point you forget that who you may end up rooting for is the bad guy. But Kashyap reels this complex story spanning decades into a slice of live that deserves a standing ovation.
 
Again, special awards are all that will come this film’s way we are sure, with ‘Barfi!’ taking the top prize this year.
 
Naturally, an Oscar-nominated film needs to live up to its selection, no matter how controversial that pick was.

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