Naga Chaitanya's Bollywood debut was released today. He is seen as Balaraju Bodi in 'Laal Singh Chaddha'. The 'Thank You' actor appears as a soldier whose primary interest lies in expanding the family business of making underwear products. Chay's character is inspired by Bubba from the original, 'Forrest Gump'.
How has the 'Bangarraju' actor been received by Bollywood critics? It is mixed. If some critics are finding the Akkineni star likable, others are saying that weak characterization failed him. "A special mention for Naga Chaitanya and Manav Vij (actor who is seen as a repentant Muslim) who find the nuances of their characters and take even the smallest scenes and bring them to life," wrote News18.
Outlook said that Tollywood's Naga Chaitanya, who is known in the north of the Telugu-speaking states only for his high-profile divorce with Samantha Ruth Prabhu, effortlessly fits into Bubba's role in 'Forrest Gump'.
But Hindustan Times is not satisfied. "While I loved Forrest and Bubba's track in the original, the plot with Laal and his fellow army officer Bala (Naga Chaitanya) is rather underwhelming." This is more a criticism of the writing aspect, not of Chay himself.
A website wrote that Naga Chaitanya’s Bala doesn’t really get the desired treatment to match the magic of Bubba. "Naga Chaitanya tries really hard to match Bubba’s innocence through his actions but couldn’t due to his lazy character sketch," the reviewer analyzed.