In recent years, the interest in gambling and casinos has become a lot more pronounced in India, where gambling remains largely illegal. Despite this, there are many Indians who access overseas betting websites to place bets on sports matches, while also looking at casino games on gambling sites. There are quite a few Indian card games that are similar to the likes of poker and blackjack, and sites offering these games have also popped up at this time. The greatest indicator of the country’s growing interest in the practice can be seen in its entertainment industry, which has begun producing a lot of content, both movies, and TV shows, with a gambling-based theme.
‘Casino’ is an upcoming Bangladeshi film based on gambling and associated crimes and drama. The movie was set to be released in the middle of this year, but the ongoing COVID pandemic has delayed its release indefinitely. The movie has been under development since June 2019, when the director met with the lead actor to discuss starring in the movie. The cast was confirmed in November 2019, with filming beginning towards the end of the month. Nearly 80% of the filming was completed in 2019, while principal photography came to an end in March 2020. However, that was precisely the time when most of the world went into lockdown due to the pandemic, and so the release of the movie has been delayed till such time that people can return to watching movies in theatres safely.
The Indian film industry is one of the most prolific and popular film industries in the world, producing perhaps the most number of movies annually in the world. There are estimates that nearly 2,000 movies are made in India every year, with only around 300-400 of these coming from ‘Bollywood’, or the Hindi film industry, as it is colloquially known. The rest comes from the various regional language industries, with the south of the country particularly prolific as well. In terms of box office earnings, Bollywood makes up around 45% of the total box office, with the South Indian industries, Telugu and Tamil mainly, comprising 35%, and the other various languages making up the rest.
Thus, India does not just have one film industry; rather, the film industries reflect the diversity of the country in terms of its languages, religions, customs, and social conditions. While Bollywood has gained a reputation globally for long dramas with elaborate song and dance routines in every film, it has also been turning out character-driven stories over the last decade or so with aplomb. There has been a focus on providing more realistic and relevant content as audience preferences have changed, especially due to the growing influence of Western cinema and media, as more and more people with access to the internet tune in to the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime Video to see the best of the content that Hollywood and other countries have to offer. This explains why casino movies and gambling content has also been gaining traction in recent times in the country.
This is one of the examples of the Indian and Bangladeshi movie industries putting out content based on gambling and casinos. The topic has become quite popular in the region, and while there is no movement on making gambling legal any time soon, India does have a few states where gambling is allowed, subject to specific rules and restrictions. Goa, which is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country, is one of them, and so most of the country’s casinos can be found here. In any case, these movies just go to show how gambling and casino games are drawing the attention of the country’s population, and as more and more people go online, this number is only set to increase over the coming years.