I've said it once and I'll say it again: 2017 is the year of Taapsee Pannu. With multiple releases this year, the actress' most awaited film has to be 'Naam Shabana', quite possibly the Indian Film Industry's first ever spin-off prequel.
Taapsee Pannu is the action hero we never knew we needed in 'Naam Shabana'.
Pannu's journey to 'Naam Shabana' started with the 2015 sleeper hit 'Baby' starring Akshay Kumar and directed by Neeraj Pandey. The up and coming actress has a very brief role, with minimal dialogue, but an amazing action sequence that made everyone sit up and take notice. It's a brutal action sequence, where the star performed almost all of her own stunts.
So much so, that she's now the lead of 'Naam Shabana', a story about that character prior to the events of 'Baby'.
While many movies of women kicking ass in Bollywood have come and gone, like 'Mardaani' and 'Akira', this definitely looks like the next logical step; a story where the action compliments the story, instead of being a novelty of 'Look! A girl that fights!'
'Naam Shabana' portrays the character of Pannu in a tragic light in the beginning, where seemingly some personal tragedy causes her to be recruited into the government by Manoj Bajpayee's character, who provides the expository narration throughout the trailer. The trailer almost conveys 'Bourne Identity' vibes that take us through an almost montage of her training from simple girl to bad ass secret agent. It's an origin story through and through it seems.
The movie also seems to have retained many of the same elements that made 'Baby' so successful. The high-wire tension of secret spies working behind the scenes to take down threats to the nation, with a slick and suave demeanor to 'Mission Impossible' style music in the background, all work brilliantly with one another.
While the only note of concern is director Shivam Nair's relative inexperience, given his string of smaller films that failed to do well at the box office. However, Pandey is still producing the film, with much of the same talent as 'Baby', both on and off screen, so Nair has the guidance to be able to knock 'Naam Shabana' out of the park.
Pannu's short career has thus far been pretty damn impressive. In just a few short films, especially her most recent success 'Pink', she's showing immense growth as an actress, choosing unconventional roles that highlight aspects of her skill set that most new actresses would deem to risky to dabble in. Especially choosing films that aren't mainstream or full of commercial elements like her other 2017 movie, 'The Ghazi Attack'.
'Naam Shabana' definitely looks like an impressive addition to her resume, and she seems to be kicking all kinds of ass all over this trailer. The makers were smart to pad Pannu in the movie with veteran actors like Manoj Bajpayee and Anupam Kher, to better sell her to audiences, but she definitely stands out among the rest with her unique look and presence. I only wish that the would've kept the inclusion of Akshay Kumar a surprise, instead of exposing his cameo in the trailer alone. But it's completely understandable from a business perspective to showcase a 'star' in the trailer, to get more butts in seats at the theatre.
'Naam Shabana' stars Taapsee Pannu, Manoj Bajpayee and Anupam Kher with a cameo by Akshay Kumar. Directed by Shivam Nair, the movie releases March 31st, 2017.
What did you think about the 'Naam Shabana' Trailer? Let us know below.