Paapi Gudia crops up every time we talk about bad Bollywood horror movies. That’s because it’s one of the many complete Hollywood movie ripoffs. The movie’s not aged well at all but had a pretty interesting star cast for the era in which it hit theaters in 1996. Horror movie fans will know that Papi Gudia was straight away rip-off of the iconic Child’s Play.
The Child’s Play Connection
The movie starred Karishma Kapoor, Avinash Wadhwan and others. Karishma played the elder sister. A child actor, Master Amar Bhardwaj played the child who comes in contact with the supernatural doll. Shakti Kapoor plays Charan Raj, the criminal whose soul possesses the doll.
Back in the nineties, adaptations and remakes were not the norm, at least when it came to Bollywood and Hollywood. Directors used to remake South movies into Bollywood blockbusters and vice versa. But nobody wanted to make the Hollywood and Bollywood connection in the nineties.
So, even though the concept and even the initial screenplay was a direct lift of Child’s Play, nobody related to the movie made a note of the connection. Of course, once the movie released, woke audiences immediately make the relation and that lives on, even twenty years after the movie’s launched.
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Why did Karishma Kapoor Sign Up For a Horror Movie?
There’s no reason why Karishma Kapoor would say yes to a typical Bollywood horror movie in 1996. She made her debut with the blockbuster Prem Qaidi just five years ago. Since then, she was part of some successful movies like Anari, Gopi Kishan and other mainstream Bollywood movies.
Later on, she joined the David Dhawan bandwagon with such super hits like Coolie No, 1, Sajan Chale Sasural, Biwi No, 1 and others. She also turned towards movies that had her character etched out, like Jeet. In 1996, she hit her stride with Raja Hindustani. Then came movies like Hero No, 1, Judwaa and of course, Dil To Pagal Hai.
Just four years after Papi Gudia, she did a complete U-Turn with movies like Fiza and Zubeidaa. In 2002, she was the epitome of female power in Shakti. It just doesn’t add up. Maybe Karishma got enamored by the fact that Lawrence’s romantic drama history that had her say her to the movie.
Paapi Gudia is Lawrence D’Souza’s only horror directorial
Paapi Gudia will forever live in infamy for one more reason. Lawrence D’Souza directed it. In fact, this is the only Lawrence D’Souza Bollywood horror movie. Lawrence was involved in various aspects of the production of movies like Hatya (Murder) and Gair Kanooni (Illegal).
He made his directorial debut with Nyay Anyay (Justice Injustice) and then went on to make Saajan. He was also director of photography for the out and out a horror movie, Jai Kaali. But if there’s ever a quiz with the question, which Bollywood horror movie was a Lawrence D’Souza directorial, remember, the answer is Paapi Gudia.
His most famous Bollywood movie was a legitimate blockbuster that changed the narrative for Bollywood romance movies – Saajan. The movie was very different from the current crop of Bollywood movies. Starring Sanjay Dutt, Salman Khan and Madhuri Dixit, it looked at the typical love stories with a fresh new outlook.
It’s fascinating to think that a director who made a hit romance movie then went on to make a horror movie. Very few directors today change their game like this. One of the very few who have done this is Sanjay Leela Bhanshali. Bhanshali has movies like Khamoshi under his belt but went on to produce total mainstream movies like Rowdy Rathore.
There’s been several Child’s Play inspired movies to post that, but none of them did a screenplay ripoff of the classic Hollywood horror movie. And no, nobody thought of making it into a franchise as well.,
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