Badhaai Do trailer out: Rajkummar Rao and Bhumi Pednekar keep up a secret
Marital pressures and queer rights in Junglee Pictures' Badhaai Ho follow-up
Junglee Pictures has released the trailer of Badhaai Do. The film, directed by Harshavardhan Kulkarni, stars Rajkummar Rao and Bhumi Pednekar. It is set to release theatrically on February 11.
Shardul (Rajkummar) is a cop. Suman (Bhumi) is a PT teacher. He chases her around but she isn't inclined to marry. Reason? A girl (Chum Darang) she's in love with. Shardul has a proposition: let's marry for convenience, fob off our parents and continue life as is. Three scenes later, he's passing off his wife's lover as her cousin and is clearly running out of hacks. In Atrangi Re (2021), at least the disrupting third party was imaginary. Here, she's all too real.
Badhaai Do adapts the now-familiar trope of a married couple hiding a lover, transplanted to the context of queer rights in India. It gets tricky with both families pressurizing the couple to conceive—a different conflict, indeed, to the one in 2018's Badhaai Ho. Same-sex marriages are still not legally recognised in India, and many settle for an understanding partner (often queer themselves, unlike Shardul in the film) to escape pressure.
Both Rajkummar and Bhumi are stars of contemporary middle cinema. They're joined by a reliable cast, including Seema Pahwa, Sheeba Chadha, Lovleen Mishra and Nitish Pandey. As for Chum, she's a model and entrepreneur from Arunachal Pradesh, and had a brief appearance in the 2020 series Paatal Lok.
Badhaai Do is written by Akshat Ghildial, Suman Adhikary and Harshavardhan Kulkarni. It's the first major Hindi theatrical release after films were postponed in light of spiking cases.