Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 grossed big bucks at the box office in 2022. Whilst the first film was a remake of the Malayalam hit Manichitrathazhu, the sequel proceeded 15 years post the 2007-Hindi hit. Recently, a third instalment has been announced including a sequel of Chandramkuhi in Tamil.
When it comes to the Hindi belt, Vidya Balan and Tabu left a lasting impact as Manjulika, especially the latter in a double role. In fact, for the first movie, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Rani Mukerji were apparently approached for the main roles. Imagine had they been cast, it would’ve been intriguing to see how they would’ve performed as the characters.
With Bhool Bhulaiyaa 3 just announced we explore the names of a few talented Indian actresses that would be great potential for the role!
Dixit has always championed roles that are revolutionary and formidable. In Dedh Ishqiya and The Fame Game, she nailed characters which have a grey strand. It would be so fascinating to see her explore a completely supernatural or dark role. Plus, it has been a while since she explored this style ever since 100 Days. Given her training in Indian classical dancing, her performance will certainly be compelling.
Manisha is a pristine beauty whose performances have exuded authenticity and solidarity. Yet, many of her roles are of broken spirit but endeavours to find the strength to revolt against oppression. Such examples are seen in movies like Dil Se, Agni Sakshi and Khamoshi. Such traits are what Manjulika faced in her life. It would be fascinating to see how Koirala brings her excellence in acting to the role.
When it comes to dealing with characters that are emotionally challenged, Deepika has always championed mental health through the arts. Furthermore, her roles in films like Padmaavat added impetus to women fighting patriarchy for their honour. Even movies like Race 2 display her fieriness. In her first film, Om Shanti Om, there was a gothic feel to the character and she executed it with grace and dignity. To see her depict a role that is more on the supernatural spectrum would be a treat.
Neena is a hard-working and dedicated actor who has wowed us over the years with some solid performances. She is among the actresses who have broken taboos on the style of characters experienced artists should take up. Well, she pushed the boundaries as a scorned and vengeful mother in Dial 100. The simplicity of her playing a dark role is incredibly powerful and certainly left a lasting impact.
Suman from Maine Pyar Kiya is in a dark role, now that would be a coup and a half. Bhagyashree left a great impression in the thriller series Laut Aao Trisha. As a pining mother who searches for a missing child, her expressions and demeanour beg compassion and empathy. Imagine those same impressions as potentially an antagonistic character. The transition would be a wonder for the screen.
Dutta has presented every character with grace and poise. When it comes to thrillers and horror, she had her tryst in films like Kaal, Jurm and Bhagam Bhag. In the latter titles, we see a smooth transition from a seemingly unimpeachable lady to one with darker agendas. It would be nostalgic to see Lara essay a character like this, but of course with a more creepy angle.
Like Neena, it is empowering to see Kapadia explore diverse characters at a mature stage of her career. Instead of playing the archetypal mother role, she is playing antagonists in Hollywood biggies like Tenet or an espionage head in the blockbuster Pathaan. Her lesser-known works such as Hum Kaun Hai? also see her adapting to the horror genre. Perhaps a role like Manjulika may just be more inspiring for other experienced actors.
Kriti is an actor who deserves more substantial roles after proving her merit in movies like Mimi. Recently in Bhediya, her tryst with horror showed a seamless change from an unassuming doctor to a werewolf. The role will be presented in a glamorous yet appealing way. Plus, a performance like this will definitely prove to be a milestone in Sanon’s career too.
The pan-Indian actress has made a huge name for herself in South-Indian cinema. Whether it’s the girl-next-door in Tere Naam or the truth crusader in Anasuya, Bhumika has a warm and loveable appeal. Though she has done a few thrillers, a role like this could showcase Chawla in a completely distinct light. Furthermore, her saree looks regal. And her shift in expressions could make Manjulika all the more sinister.
From being the frightened one in Ghost Stories to the poised queen in Sita Ramam, Mrunal is quite the talent. Her innocent look and stunning avatar could be quite the lethal combination. We have never seen Thakur explore a murky role before so Bhool Bhulaiyaa could prove to be a distinguished title in her filmography. Moreover, it would be fascinating to see a fresh face headline the movie.
Whilst we are going on the presumption of another female antagonist in the franchise, perhaps a twist could be that the male lead could turn out to be the villain instead. If that’s the case, besides Kartik Aaryan as Rooh Baba, who do you think might be a great name to rope in?