“Jubilee,” created and directed by Vikramaditya Motwane, is all about the golden period of Hindi cinema when the studios ruled the film industry. Our country had just become a newly independent nation, and was trying to fit in an era where we had to choose between being on the Soviet side or being with the Americans when it comes to political ideology; that would also set the tone for the kind of cinema that would be produced by the Hindi film industry. Amidst all this, we get to see people struggling to survive and, at the same time, people being recognized by becoming overnight sensations. There is Binod Das, aka Madan Kumar, who became the most sought-after actor from Roy Talkies after a hit film. From that point of his life there was no turning back for him. But there is a history behind his transformation into Madan Kumar from Binod Das; will the past catch up with him?
Jay Khanna, the erstwhile son of the owner of a theater that has lost its glory since the family had to move from Karachi to Mumbai because of the partition, is trying hard to make a foothold in the industry by writing and directing a film that he knows would only work if Madan Kumar acted in it, but will star Madan Kumar throw any fits to get Jay to around his whims and fancies?
“Jubilee” part one ended on a troubling note as Jay Khanna was preparing for the muhurat of his first film when it was marred by the rival political party, which did not want Jay to start the shooting of the film on the land allocated to him by another political leader. His financier, Mr. Walia, was quick to find a solution to the problem when Madan Kumar, the lead in Jay’s film, refused to act in it because of the past rivalry he has had with Mr. Walia over Madan’s debut film. Madan can dictate terms in this scenario, as he has the power to back away, which he does, putting Jay in a horrible position. Jay had done his best to see that no issue would crop up that would affect the shooting of his film, but for him, the beginning of the film is marred by an unnecessary ego clash, so Jay will have to find a way out to resolve the matter and begin the shoot. How does he plan to do that?
The next part will have Srikant Roy trying to keep Madan Kumar close to his production house because the man will surely attract an audience that will bring him profits. The man already laid his groundwork by letting Madan know that Sumitra is aware of his hand in Jamshed Khan’s death, and if Jay Khanna is also made aware of the same, it would be difficult for him to sustain himself in the industry. One reason why Madan Kumar must have backed off from Jay’s project is his connection to Jamshed Khan’s disappearance; using Mr. Walia’s name was just an excuse to exit from a project he had legally committed to. Madan is aware of the power he holds over people, and he can use it to his benefit so that his name is not dragged into a controversy that would end his career before it begins.
Jay will find a solution to the Madan Kumar–Shamsher Walia clash, and the man will surely see some success coming his way. Jay Khanna will have his share of problems making films from here on, but his popularity will help him cross plenty of hurdles that he comes across. There is a chance Madan will finally work with Jay Khanna, and theirs would be an onscreen actor-director pair that would make a hit. “Jubilee” will focus on new directors and producers pushing the boundaries of filmmaking in newly independent India. Srikant Roy has steered clear of making any propaganda films, but it will be interesting to see if Srikant Roy will succumb to any political pressure and if he wants to keep producing good Hindi films that do not cater to any ideology that the political faction expects him to adhere to. There is a chance of him facing a boycott, which he already has, but the problems for Srikant Roy will keep increasing. Now that his wife and business partner, Sumitra Kumari, has switched allegiance, it would become difficult for Srikant Roy to sustain himself as a film producer. Either he will come out of it victorious, or he will be rendered bankrupt by the end of the first season of “Jubilee.”
Madan Kumar, the erstwhile popular actor who is slowly becoming the heartthrob of the nation, has his conscience marred by the memory of how Jamshed Khan was killed and how he partly feels responsible for his death. Madan always wanted to be a superstar, but his stepping stone was a bit difficult, and the memory of it kept coming back to him in the most unexpected of places. Like how Don Draper feels in the show “Mad Men.” Though he is afraid that this piece of the incident will catch up with him eventually, there is a version of him that believes that he will be able to get rid of this issue at hand and possibly find a solution. Sumitra Kumari, his co-star and the producer of his films, will make sure Madan pays for his crimes, and in the second part, she will have to do so slowly and steadily in the hope of letting Madan make a mistake he will not be able to recover from.
The next five episodes will see Madan Kumar going through an all-time high and how quickly he will face a nosedive in his career thanks to the people around him who do not want him to succeed, plus his involvement in letting Jamshed die at the hands of the rioters, when this truth somehow coming back to bite him. Madan will either swim back to keep himself afloat in the industry or drown in the pile of allegations against him and disappear into oblivion.
Vikramaditya’s work with “Jubilee” is bound to make a lot of observations about how the scene was back in the day and why women-led work was not appreciated at all. Women were not expected to lead films or be chosen to be the voice of the country. “Jubilee” is set in an era where there were still restrictions and political interference, and the subject matter of the screenplay will also delve deep into how many directors from that era broke the boundaries of filmmaking to give the Hindi cinema-loving audience some path-breaking work to watch on the big screen. The second part of “Jubilee” will be released on April 14, 2023, and there is a lot to look forward to.