The Office India. Bang Bang (Knight & Day). Kaante (Resovoir Dogs). God Tussi Great Ho
(Bruce Almighty). MASAKALI 2.0 (ugh)
Our industry loves making remakes of popular franchises and songs, simply to infuriate the majority of us, and yet somehow makes more money off it than one could ever imagine! We've witnessed debates over how makers of these properties have simply ruined the original. The fact that the film and music industry always needs to be ‘inspired’ by something that already exists is just sad. As frustrating as it is, I thought it would be a great idea to imagine extremely renowned shows and movies - and see how they would look in an Indian Remake.
WARNING: THIS ARTICLE IS FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY AND I DO NOT ENCOURAGE, FOR SOMETHING LIKE THIS TO ACTUALLY HAPPEN. PLEASE LEAVE BREAKING BAD AND ALL OTHER BELOVED PROPERTIES ALONE. THANK YOU.
What if Breaking Bad was remade into a Bollywood Film?
Way back in 2015, While promoting Dilwale, Shah Rukh Khan said that he is working on an adaptation of Breaking Bad, which obviously, received a lot of hate. There has been no update on its development ever since.
There is absolutely no way a film with two people, cooking METH would get a green light from the censor board, because well, it’s the censor board and
DRUGS DIKHAANEY SEY POORA INDIAN CULTURE BIGAD JAAYEGA!
Vikram Vajpayee is a middle-class college professor, who teaches chemistry. He has a wife, Nilima, who is a homemaker, and sells Tupperware bottles for petty income. Their son, 14 is named “Chhota Vikram” since Nilima’s family baba looked within the stars, meditated for 20 minutes, and decided this name for them as it matches every lucky numerology combination that’s ever existed. And yes, Chhota Vikram is obsessed with ‘Naashta’ as well. Did I mention he has Polio?
Nillima has a brother, Harish, who is a Police Officer.
Vikram has always been the butt of all jokes in the staff room. The teachers take his innocence for granted and are often seen making fun of the way he talks, how introverted he is and how he drains the life out of every situation. Mr Irani, the principal, is the absolute worst. He makes elaborate plans with the rest of the faculty, to come with up creative ways to prank Vikram. Mr. Irani is a mixture of Bogdan Wolynetz (The car wash owner, with the funny eyebrows, in BrBa) and Michael Scott from the Office. However, his comedy is limited to whoopie cushions, fake-firing Vikram, constantly trying to ask him about his wife (every male teacher has a thing for her by the way) and of course cracking variations of Vikram-Betal jokes.
The students have no respect for him as well. They draw his face on classroom tables, pair him up with teachers, sleep in class, spread disgusting rumours about him and level pranks which we have all thought of doing. He is constantly seen coughing and feeling weak in classes, but instead of helping him, his students call him ‘Kejriwal’ and have a good laugh over it.
Vikram is obviously frustrated with this life of his but certainly cannot quit his stable, decently paying job. After all, he has a family to support and chemistry is the only thing he is good at. He quietly accepts these circumstances and continues his life.
We're just 20 minutes into the film.
S**T GETS REAL
Things take a sudden turn when Vikram has a massive cough attack at home. His health had been deteriorating for quite some time now, but this time it seems to be serious. This will be an extremely intense sequence with him sweating, coughing up blood and seeming to be helpless. His wife Nilima comes home at the right time to witness this and panics as well. They take him to the hospital immediately, where after all the procedures have taken place, the doctor reveals that Vikram has...well… Lung Cancer. He has a few months left to live and there’s nothing they can do about it.
Nilima and Chota Vikram burst into tears, and there is a whole emotional song which follows. The song that’s playing in my head for this is (please sing along this is a very pivotal scene)
"Door jaakey bhi mujhsey,
Tum meri, yaadon mein rehna
Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna.....
Everything falls apart when the school gets a replacement teacher after hearing about the incident. Mr Irani sends out a deep heartfelt WhatsApp message to Vikram, wishing him well, but also breaking it to him that they can no longer continue with someone who won’t be permanent. It seems to be all over for Vikram until...
...he loses it.
When he is finally home alone, he gets out of his bed, looks at himself in the mirror and goes berserk. He keeps yelling in gibberish and breaks all the vases, all the perfume bottles that are within his reach. He tears down all the curtains.
While he is doing this, he stops for a while and notices something out of his window. He sees a man, giving out a packet of pills to his neighbour and the neighbour in return gives him a stack of 500 Rupee Notes. There is something about the salesman, he looks familiar. It suddenly strikes him that it is Jai Gulaabi, from the class of 2008! Jai used to be one of Vikram’s students. Vikram always liked Jai since he was the only one who was extremely quiet in class. However, he got kicked out of the college for, you guessed it, using drugs!
He walks out of his house, runs down the stairs and catches him before he leaves. Gasping for a breath he yells out, JAI!
Jai turns around, looks at him in shock.
“Tum yaha kya kar rahey ho?” exclaims Vikram.
“Kuch nahi sir, mein aapka haal chaal puchta lekin mein bohot ghaai mein hu”
He turns around and starts pacing on the pavement. A few packets fall out of his pocket without him knowing. Vikram picks up these packets, which have 3 white pills in them. He takes them out, sniffs them and calls Jai out again.
“Tum kuch bhul gaye” he says as Jai turns around.
Jai panics for a second, and his eyes are wide open. He brushes it off and snatches it from him saying
“Ye mere dadaji ki dawaai hai”
Vikram stares him down, for an enough amount of time to make it awkward. He proceeds to say
“Synthesised lysergic acid diethylamide, with psilocybin. Also known as Jaadui Crocin.
Ye drugs hai Jai."
Jai is still in shock. You can see the nervousness on his face. He wants to beg for mercy, but he can’t move. Vikram goes
"Agar tumhe chahiye mein police key paas na jaau toh meri baat dhyaan sey suno"
(generic Bollywood dialogue because why not)
Reluctantly, Jai asks him what.
Vikram goes “Agar mein kahu, mein yeh same drug, x100 guna behtar bana sakta hu, tum mera maal bechogey?”
ENTER DESI GUSTAVO FRING
After a lot of scenes, mirroring Walt and Jesse's arguments when he first proposes the idea of making meth together, Jai finally reveals to him he works with someone else, the kingpin who is responsible for all the drug trade in India. He seems to be an innocent man, one loved by the public. He is the owner of KFC India - Gaurav Fadnavis. Jai sets up a meeting, and Gaurav is the sketchiest person you would ever meet. He is willing to give Vikram a chance. He takes him to the basement of a KFC restaurant, and guess what, it’s a secret lab producing unspeakable drugs.
Vikram is fascinated by the heavy-duty equipment they use, and the number of employees working at the plant. Gaurav asks him to prepare one batch, and if it’s not how Vikram claims to be, he will shoot him in the head. (Since only his employees are supposed to know about his operations)
He takes hours, but finally, he manages to produce a lot of a few 100 tablets, WHICH ARE BLUE in colour. Gaurav is sceptical, but then one of his scientists tests it out and tells him that it is the purest they have ever seen and it’s humanly impossible to make a product of such quality.
Gaurav is seen smiling for the first time since his introduction and he shakes Vikram’s hand, welcoming him to this world. As Breaking Bad fans, we all know things are going to get real from here!
Picture abhi baaki hai mere dost, and I can't do justice to all of it in one article! Stay tuned for the second half of my ambitious Bollywood Breaking Bad Film, which I plan to call - Vikram. (There is a lot of ways we can get creative about this and I would love to hear your suggestions)
Reading is not over yet though, here is the cast in my head for Vikram! Obviously, if Shah Rukh Khan ends up making an adaptation, he will be the one playing Heisenberg. Yet, what I would want is-
(Walter White) - Sanjay Dutt
For some reason, I feel like he is in the perfect age group to play this part. The Vikram version of him will obviously be a much toned-down version of his real personality and I feel like he can nail playing an innocent teacher, turned drug lord. The Walt to Heisenberg transition for him would be epic!
Jesse Pinkman) - Ranveer Singh
He can easily play a young junkie, who is a street-level drug dealer. The arguments and chemistry (no pun intended) with Sanjay Dutt would look great on screen!
Nilimma (Skyler White) - Tabu
She is someone who can play this character, and mirror the original one. Though we all hated Skyler, we have to admit her acting was worthy of appreciation!
(Walt Jr.) - Bhavya Gandhi
He actually looks like an Indian version of him, and it would be fun to see our beloved Tapu in this role!
(Bogdan Wolynetz) - Boman Irani
He annoyed us as Virus and, made us laugh as the Principal in Main Hoon Na. My vision for this character is a combination of both these characters.
(Gustavo Fring) - Irfaan Khan
Imagine Irfaan Khan playing one of the most badass villains in television history, the only one who is scarier than Heisenberg himself. Take all my money!
Please feel free to drop down your thoughts, observations and suggestions down in the comments below.
And make sure you follow the Whistles & Echoes Instagram page to know when Part 2 comes out - Stay Tuned!