July 27 was a special day for Kriti Sanon for two reasons. First, it was the actor’s 31st birthday. Second, it was the day on which her latest, Mimi, was released on Netflix and JioCinema, four days before its scheduled release date. ‘Mimi delivering before time’ read the film’s poster, which dropped on Instagram Live barely a few hours before 26th midnight, showing a pregnant Mimi (Kriti Sanon) proudly showing off her baby bump. Birthday gift or not, experts conjecture that the real reason for the early release had something to do with the bootlegged copies of the film that were leaked on piracy sites and on Telegram. Out of all her films—from Heropanti (2014) to Luka Chuppi (2019) and Panipat (2019)—Mimi takes the cake for being the most aggressively promoted film on social media and otherwise so far.
Buzz around the film’s premise of surrogacy first began when director Laxman Utekar announced a remake of the highly acclaimed and national award-winning Marathi original, Mala Aai Vhaaychay (2011), directed by lawyer and filmmaker Samrouddhi Porey, which had also explored the same theme. And so, the challenge was how to remake a film which had found unprecedented mainstream success a decade ago for a more evolved and discerning audience. This, at a time when societal laws relating to surrogacy were getting rewritten, and Bollywood’s own had begun embracing it. In the last few years, a number of B-town stars have opted for surrogacy, including Karan Johar, Shah Rukh Khan and Tusshar Kapoor.
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