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Bell Bottom (2021 film)

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Bell Bottom
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRanjit M. Tewari
Written byAseem Arrora
Parveez Shaikh
Produced byVashu Bhagnani
Jackky Bhagnani
Deepshikha Deshmukh
Monisha Advani
Madhu Bhojwani
Nikkhil Advani
StarringAkshay Kumar
Vaani Kapoor
Lara Dutta
CinematographyRajeev Ravi
Edited byChandan Arora
Music byDaniel B. George
Distributed byPen Marudhar Entertainment
Release date
  • 19 August 2021 (2021-08-19)[1]
Running time
123 minutes[2]
Budget₹150 crore [3]
Box officeest. ₹50.58 crore[4]

Bell Bottom is a 2021 Indian Hindi-language action thriller film[2][5] directed by Ranjit M. Tewari.[6] The film is written by Aseem Arrora and Parveez Sheikh, with production by Vashu Bhagnani, Jackky Bhagnani, Deepshikha Deshmukh and Nikkhil Advani under their respective banners Pooja Entertainment and Emmay Entertainment.[7] It stars Akshay Kumar as the lead character, with Vaani Kapoor, Lara Dutta and Huma Qureshi in an extended cameo appearance.[8] Bell Bottom is inspired from real life hijacking events in India by Khalistani terrorists during the 1980s, such as the Indian Airlines Flight 423, 405 and 421 hijackings.[9][10]

Principal photography began on 20 August 2020.[11] The film was wrapped up on 30 September in London.[12] The film released in theatres on 19 August 2021 in 3D. The film received mixed reviews from critics, with praise for Kumar’s and Dutta’s performances, art direction, screenplay, background score and cinematography but criticism for the poor visual effects and climax.[1] Such mixed reviews, combined with the second wave of COVID-19 and the ensuing lockdown across various states, made it a major commercial failure.[13]


In 1984, Indian Airlines Flight 691 (resembling Indian Airlines Flight 421) is hijacked, the seventh such hijacking in India in five years, with all the previous ones ending in acquiescence to the hijackers' demands that other terrorists be freed and money be delivered. During her briefing, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, frustrated at the lack of action taken on the matter, decides to allow a RAW agent code-named "Bell Bottom" to handle the case. As a "mere" clerk, he is already viewed with consternation by the other officials, and his deduction that the alleged masterminds, a Khalistan separatist group named "Azaadi Dal" (lit.'Liberation Organisation'), are merely a front for Pakistan's ISI is rebuffed by them due to improving Indo-Pakistani relations. After the plane lands in Amritsar when he predicted it would land in Lahore, he is dismissed. However, his supervisor points out that he is an expert on hijacking analysis and is motivated by personal experience.

In 1979, polymath Anshul Malhotra lives with his wife Radhika and his mother Raavi, an asthmatic who frequently visits his brother in London. Her flight is hijacked by terrorists, but then-PM Morarji Desai and Pakistani President Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq negotiate and fulfill the hijackers demands in exchange for the hostages' release. However, Raavi dies, reportedly due to natural causes. Soon after, though, Anshul is abducted by RAW, who reveal that one of the hijackers, Daljeet "Doddy" Singh, had purposely withheld her inhaler, pusher her into the galley and thrown heavy blankets on her, increasing her suffering as she died. Anshul is given the offer to join RAW; he accepts and takes on the code-name Bell Bottom, with his cover to his wife being that he is an embassy officer. After his training, which showcases his extraordinary memory and improves his previously subpar physical skills, he is assigned to the hijacking desk. In 1983, he finds one of the hijackers while visiting his brother in London and tracks them; he raids their house with other RAW agents and captures three of them but the fourth, Doddy Singh, escapes.

Back in the present, the plane takes off from Amritsar and lands in Lahore, prompting Gandhi to order Anshul back in. He convinces her to "break script" and disallow the Pakistani side to send their negotiating team, and orders them not to refuel the plane. In response, Zia sends his minister to keep track of the situation. In Lahore, the minister replaces the hijacker with Doddy and supplies weapons and explosives. Correctly figuring out that they will go to the Middle East to take advantage of their naivete in aerial terrorism, Anshul prepares for a covert operation in Dubai against the Indian ministers' wishes. Meanwhile, the Pakistani minister goes to Dubai to observe what is going on and guide Doddy.

Upon arrival, Anshul and his team, disguised as diplomatic aides, meet up with a contact in the Dubai airport, where they see Dubai's emphasis on humanitarianism and avoidance of bloodshed. Their first plan, covertly entering the aircraft and disarming the hijackers, is foiled when the Pakistani minister notices and closes the cargo door. Anshul's "plan B", sending in the Indian army, is also curtailed when the Dubai officials are notified and the ship they are on is denied entry. With all avenues closed, the ministers go to negotiate; although they agree to the terrorists' demands of money, more terrorist releases, and a chartered flight to London, they are surprised at the terrorists' extreme inhumanity as one of them is taken hostage as a "VIP" target to be held until they get to London. Seemingly out of options, Anshul asks their airport contact to take them to an under-construction terminal so they can view the proceedings; however this is a ruse as Anshul reveals his knowledge of the contact's betrayal and ties her up. Disguising themselves as airport workers, they take advantage of a sandstorm to get on the field, free the VIPs, and capture the terrorists, redirecting the chartered flight to India. The Emir of Dubai denies them take off clearance at first, but after Anshul explains how their methods fit in with Dubai's humanism, he grants it. In India, the terrorists are booked, with Zia and the ISI leaders huffing in disgrace, and the flight is returned, with all on board safe and sound and reunited with their families. In the end, it is revealed that Radhika was actually working for RAW and had informed them of her husband's abilities and background in the first place.




The film was officially announced in November 2019.[23] Based on true events, Bell Bottom is set during 1980s about some unforgettable heroes of the era.[24][25] It became the first film to begin shooting post COVID-19 pandemic in India.[26] Principal photography was completed in a single schedule from 20 August to 30 September 2020 in Glasgow and London.[27][28]


The film was initially set for theatrical release on 22 January 2021 but was later moved to 2 April, then to 28 May and later to 27 July 2021 as it faced delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[29] Post the second wave of the pandemic in India, it was the first film to release theatrically except in Maharashtra theatres that were closed at that time. The film released on 19 August 2021 in 3D.[1] It premiered on Amazon Prime Video on 16 September, and in Maharashtra cinemas on 22 October 2021.


Bell Bottom
Soundtrack album by
Amaal Mallik, Tanishk Bagchi, Shantanu Dutta, Gurnazar and Maninder Buttar
Released24 August 2021[30]
GenreFeature film soundtrack
LabelSaregama Music

The film score is composed by Daniel B. George while Julius Packiam composed the trailer score. The songs featured in the film are composed by Amaal Mallik, Tanishk Bagchi, Shantanu Dutta, Gurnazar and Maninder Buttar while lyrics are written by Rashmi Virag, Tanishk Bagchi, Babbu Maan, Maninder Buttar, Seema Saini and Gurnazar.[citation needed]

The song Sakhiyan2.0 was a remake of the 2018 Punjabi song Sakhiyan by Maninder Buttar.[31]

Track listing
1."Bell Bottom Theme - Dhoom Tara"Tanishk BagchiTanishk BagchiZara Khan2:05
2."Marjaawaan"GurnazarGurnazarGurnazar, Asees Kaur3:45
3."Sakhiyan2.0"Babbu Maan, Maninder Buttar, Tanishk BagchiManinder Buttar, Tanishk BagchiManinder Buttar, Zara Khan2:57
4."Tum Aaogey"Rashmi ViragAmaal MallikArmaan Malik4:44
5."Khair Mangde"Seema SainiShantanu DuttaPratibha Singh Baghel3:49
6."Khair Mangde" (Male Version)Seema SainiShantanu DuttaDarshan Raval3:48
Total length:21:08

Box office[edit]

Bell Bottom earned 2.75 crore at the domestic box office on its opening day. On the second day, the film collected 8.60 crore. On the third day, the film collected 3 crore. On the fourth day, the film collected 36.40 crore, taking total opening weekend domestic collection to 52.75 crore.[4]

As of 1 October 2021, The film grossed 36.46 crore in India and 14.12 crore overseas, the film has a worldwide gross collection of 50.58 crore.[4]


On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, it holds a rating of 58%. Suchin Mehrotra writing for Film Companion criticised the screenplay of the movie saying that “in the end, somewhere buried within Bell Bottom are the building blocks of a great thriller. It's just shrouded in simplistic storytelling and ‘hijacked’ by the pressures of the big Hindi movie formula.”[32] Monika Rawal Kukreja of The Hindustan Times praised the film for being an edge-of-the-seat thriller.[33]


The film was banned in three Gulf countries, namely Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar. The film certification authorities banned it on grounds of tampering with historical facts. It was pointed out that the 1984 incident actually had the United Arab Emirates Defence Minister Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and the UAE authorities getting the hijackers, while the film portrayed Kumar's character and his team as the real heroes of the mission.[34][35]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Akshay Kumar starrer 'Bell Bottom' to release in 3D on August 19". The Times of India. 2 August 2021. Retrieved 2 August 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Bell Bottom (2021)". British Board of Film Classification. Archived from the original on 13 August 2021. Retrieved 13 August 2021.
  3. ^ "Bell Bottom (2021): Budget & Box Office Verdict". Box Office India. Retrieved 12 September 2022.
  4. ^ a b c "Bell Bottom 3D Box Office". Bollywood Hungama. 19 August 2021. Retrieved 20 September 2021.
  5. ^ "Bell Bottom (2021)". Irish Film Classification Office. Archived from the original on 7 September 2021. Retrieved 16 May 2022.
  6. ^ Singh, Shalu (6 July 2020). "Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom to go on floors next month in UK". India TV News. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  7. ^ "Akshay Kumar, Vaani Kapoor's Bellbottom becomes first Hindi film to commence shooting post lockdown". Firstpost. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  8. ^ "Akshay Kumar to start shooting for Bell Bottom next month". Filmfare. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  9. ^ Rama, Rupali (4 August 2021). "Bell Bottom Real Story: चाकू की नोक पर हाइजैक हुए थे 6 प्लेन, खालिस्तान की मांग संग ये है 'बेल बॉलम' की सच्ची कहानी". News 24 Hindi (in Hindi). Archived from the original on 9 August 2021.
  10. ^ "Akshay Kumar is on a mission to rescue 212 Indians on board". Mumbai Mirror. 9 September 2020. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  11. ^ "Akshay Kumar's espionage thriller Bell Bottom to start shooting in August". Mumbai Mirror. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  12. ^ "Akshay Kumar returns home after wrapping the shoot for Bell Bottom with co-star Vaani Kapoor". Bollywood Hungama. 3 October 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2021.
  13. ^ "Bell Bottom - Movie". Box Office India.
  14. ^ a b "Bellbottom: Akshay Kumar, Vaani Kapoor to begin shooting next month". The Indian Express. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  15. ^ "Lara Dutta opens up about her role as Indira Gandhi in BellBottom and how she got the opportunity". Bollywood Hungama. 4 August 2021. Retrieved 4 August 2021.
  16. ^ Basu, Nilanjana (6 July 2020). "Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom Team Will Fly To UK For Film's First Schedule In August". NDTV.com. Retrieved 15 May 2021.
  17. ^ "Adil Hussain on resuming work with Bell Bottom: It was a very mixed feeling to go out and shoot". Hindustan Times. 12 November 2020. Retrieved 27 February 2021.
  18. ^ Ramachandran, Naman (30 September 2020). "Akshay Kumar's 'Bellbottom' Wraps Scotland Shoot Amid Pandemic (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 20 February 2021.
  19. ^ "Aniruddh Dave Joins The Cast Of Akshay Kumar Starrer 'Bell Bottom'". Mumbai Live. 8 August 2020. Retrieved 27 December 2020.
  20. ^ Sangeetha, P. "Thalaivasal Vijay has a fun experience shooting for with Akshay Kumar for Bell Bottom - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  21. ^ "Fresh pair: Vaani Kapoor to star opposite Akshay Kumar in Bell-Bottom". Tribuneindia News Service. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  22. ^ "Huma Qureshi joins the cast of Akshay Kumar-starrer Bell Bottom". Hindustan Times. 21 June 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  23. ^ "Time we get back to work: Akshay Kumar announces 'Bellbottom' with Vaani Kapoor to go on floors in August". The Times of India. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  24. ^ "Bell Bottom first look: Akshay Kumar announces spy thriller based on true events, says it is not a remake". Hindustan Times. 11 November 2019. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  25. ^ न्यूज़, रवि जैन, एबीपी (6 July 2020). "कोरोना वायरस के बीच अगस्त में अक्षय कुमार शुरू करेंगे 'बेलबॉटम' की शूटिंग". www.abplive.com (in Hindi). Retrieved 6 July 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  26. ^ "Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom First Bollywood Film to Shoot in International Location Amid Coronavirus". News18. 6 July 2020. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  27. ^ "Akshay Kumar along with Jackky and Puja Bhagnani give the mahurat clap for Bellbottom". Bollywood Hungama. 21 August 2020. Retrieved 22 August 2020.
  28. ^ "Akshay Kumar starrer Bell Bottom's team is all smiles as they return to Mumbai". Bollywood Hungama. 4 October 2020. Retrieved 15 June 2021.
  29. ^ Singh, Nisha (3 May 2021). "No Speculation On Release Of Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom Please, Urge Makers". NDTV. Retrieved 28 May 2021.
  30. ^ "Bell Bottom – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack". Jiosaavn. 3 August 2021. Archived from the original on 27 August 2021. Retrieved 24 August 2021.
  31. ^ "Akshay Kumar-Vaani Kapoor get groovy in BellBottom song Sakhiyan 2.0, Huma Qureshi's bhangra has all our attention". The Indian Express. 13 August 2021. Retrieved 13 August 2021.
  32. ^ Mehrotra, Suchin (21 August 2021). "Bell Bottom Review: A Riveting Story Hijacked By Simplistic Storytelling". Film Companion. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  33. ^ "BellBottom movie review: Akshay Kumar brings an edge-of-the-seat thriller, Lara Dutta and Vaani Kapoor impress". 18 August 2021.
  34. ^ "Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom Banned in Three Gulf Countries, Know Reason". News18. 21 August 2021. Retrieved 21 August 2021.
  35. ^ "Akshay Kumar starrer Bellbottom banned in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait due to content not fit for exhibition". Bollywood Hungama. 20 August 2021. Retrieved 22 August 2021.

External links[edit]