Trade predicts that Prabhas-starrer Salaaar’s Hindi version will cross Adipurush’s Hindi collections; Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Dunki will collect Rs. 220-225 crores in its lifetime :Bollywood Box Office – Bollywood Hungama

A lot was expected from the big Christmas releases, Dunki, starring Shah Rukh Khan and Salaar, starring Prabhas. Also, while Dunki was directed by Rajkumar Hirani, Salaar was helmed by Prashanth Neel of KGF fame. These filmmakers have a separate fan base. As a result, the hopes were immense. While the films did well, a lot more was expected from them. We spoke to the trade about their performance at the ticket window.

Trade analyst Atul Mohan said, “People expected more from Dunki as it was directed by Rajkumar Hirani. Also, Shah Rukh Khan’s dream run was going on.” He added, “The plot was superb. Unusually such films show characters struggling to reach foreign shares. But in this film, unko Dunki maarke wapis aana pad raha hai. This was quite fresh. With a plot like this, that too coming from Rajkumar Hirani, anybody would jump at it.”

Girish Johar, producer and film business analyst opined, “Dunki, in my opinion, is a fantastic movie. It is message-oriented and has a lot of soul. The film has to be watched with a heart and not with conventional logic. The mood of the nation was action-oriented. That could be the reason (why it underperformed). Also, the promotions could have been a little better. They underplayed the film, relying a bit too much on word of mouth.”

He also said, “Salaar affected the film more. If Salaar had not released, Dunki would have collected Rs. 30 crores more and would have had first-week collections of Rs. 180 crores.” Dunki collected Rs. 149.77 crores in its first week.

Atul Mohan further explained, “The jokes didn’t land well. But the big problem was that people had too many expectations. People went for a film like Zara Hatke Zara Bachke, for example, without much hope. And it worked. But with Dunki, people expected the moon. It’s not like it has faced outright rejection. Moviegoers don’t mind the film but they come out of the theatre and say, ‘Thoda aur accha ho sakta tha’.”

When asked how much the film will collect in its lifetime, Raj Bansal, the owner of Entertainment Paradise in Jaipur predicted, “Dunki will collect Rs. 220-225 crores in its lifetime. It’ll definitely cross the Rs. 200 crore mark. It doesn’t have strong competition until Republic Day when Fighter releases. Also, on New Year, people will want to watch light, masti waali film.”

Atul Mohan and Girish Johar also agreed and felt that Merry Christmas, starring Vijay Sethupathi and Katrina Kaif and which releases on January 12, is not a strong competition. Dunki, along with Salaar, has a clean run for a month, as a result. Girish said, “Dunki has a couple of weeks more to score. I hope it picks up over the second weekend. Rs. 200 crores plus is a given. Anything above Rs. 225 crores will be a bonus.”

Trade predicts that Prabhas-starrer Salaaar’s Hindi version will cross Adipurush’s Hindi collections; Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Dunki will collect Rs. 220-225 crores in its lifetime

Salaar collected Rs. 87.75 crores in week 1 and experts feel that it’ll cross the Rs. 135.04 crore collections of Prabhas’ previous film, Adipurush. Raj Bansal stated, “Salaar will 100% collect more than Adipurush’s Hindi collections.”

Girish Johar explained why it didn’t perform up to the mark, “Marvel superhero fatigue has set in. A similar scenario might emerge with these action films. Throughout Salaar, the tempo is so high that you are always alert while watching it. You are not consuming or feeling the film. Action, obviously, is praiseworthy. But the audience is saying ‘Ab ho gaya yeh sab. Thoda dil bhi chhu ke jaao’. Thankfully, the twist in the climax worked. Or else, the film would have fallen flat.”

Calling the fight scenes as ‘tappa action’, Girish complained, “How many times you’ll see heroes attacking baddies with such force that they bounce and fall? If you see the film from a particular point of view, it just has slow-motion action. Nothing else.”

As for the lifetime, he said, “The response is muted and not as big as was expected from the makers of KGF – Chapter 2 (2022). Rs. 90 crores toh ho hi gaya hai. Rs. 135 crores toh ho hi jaayega.”

Atul Mohan exulted, “Rs. 125 crores would be the best case scenario for Salaar. After delivering a film like KGF – Chapter 2, agar aap Rs. 125 crores mein nipat jaate ho, toh phir kya faayda?”

Film exhibitor and distributor Akshaye Rathi made his displeasure clear over the fight that erupted over the sharing of screens between the two films, “What happened last week was not business. It was ugly and uncalled for and showed our industry in a really bad light. It only led to a lose-lose situation. It hampered the business of both films. It’s not like one benefited over the other. Both lost out on the business because the advance just didn’t open on time beyond the national chains till the day of release. A lot of business, which could have happened due to these advance ticket sales, didn’t happen. I hope that we can leave aside our squabbles and egos and try to think a little more holistically and sensibly. Here, we literally witnessed a scenario where two production houses and distributors, who were at each other’s neck, ensured that hundreds of distributors all over the country, faced financial losses. That’s not healthy. I really hope we can be a little more sensible and mature in the year ahead so that such scenarios are handled with some dignity and grace.”

He signed off by saying, “I am not talking about these movies in particular. But movies that have hype and not-so-great content can benefit from advances opening up early and having a certain amount of sales. God forbid the advance don’t happen until release day and the content is not up to the mark, you miss out on a chunk of business that could have happened.”

More Pages: Salaar Box Office Collection , Salaar Movie Review

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30 Years of Maya Memsaab EXCLUSIVE: Deepa Sahi gives a RARE interview; says “Shah Rukh Khan was a child at heart and a THOROUGH gentleman”; opens up on lovemaking scenes: “I did get giggly at first but then you got to do what you got to do” : Bollywood News – Bollywood Hungama

The acclaimed film Maya Memsaab (1993) recently completed 30 years, on July 2. The film featured Deepa Sahi in a lead role while Shah Rukh Khan, Raj Babbar and Farooq Sheikh appeared in supporting roles. The actress delivered a stupendous performance in this Ketan Mehta-directorial, which was adapted from the French novel, ‘Madame Bovary’. Deepa Sahi, who debuted with Govind Nihalani’s Party (1984) delivered memorable performances in several films. She later turned producer and even director. Moreover, she also runs Maya Movies and a successful animation company, Cosmos-Maya. Incidentally, both companies are named after Deepa Sahi’s character in Maya Memsaab.

30 Years of Maya Memsaab EXCLUSIVE: Deepa Sahi gives a RARE interview; says “Shah Rukh Khan was a child at heart and a THOROUGH gentleman”; opens up on lovemaking scenes: “I did get giggly at first but then you got to do what you got to do”

The actress-entrepreneur has been away from the public eye for a long time. But on our request, she agreed to give a rare, exclusive interview to Bollywood Hungama about Maya Memsaab, working with her hubby Ketan Mehta and a lot more.

Ketan Mehta said that you were the one who recommended the book ‘Madame Bovary’ to him. When he decided to cast you, were you nervous or scared since it was quite a bold character for the early 90s? Or were you excited to take up the challenge?
I thought I was not experienced enough in life and should wait a few years to do such a complex role. But the director insisted that he could not imagine anyone else doing it. So, I was like, “What the heck? If the director is so confident, why am I being diffident”? I loved the imagery in the book, some of which stayed with me. For example, I can’t recall the exact phrase, but it compared a woman’s desires to a veil (and virtually every society has a veil as part of a woman’s attire); the veil that is “free floating at one end and tied at another!” Also. Ketan wrote some amazing dialogues which are so deep. For instance, about Maya, he says “Samajhna to asambhav hai, sambhav hai anubhav ho jaaye” or “sapno ko chhoote hi, unka rang kyon ud jaata hai?” These are life-defining lines!

How was it working with Shah Rukh Khan? It was his first film…
He is the most energetic and dedicated actor with an instinctive cinematic sense. One can’t learn such things. They need to be part of the personality and he surely had an instinct for that. Besides the fact that he is a thorough gentleman and caring for everyone on the sets, it is his energy that is the most infectious! Also, what I liked is that he is a kid at heart. He was always playing some game or the other and he’s also a big computer freak, which is what I am. Even then, he was into playing games on the computer.

How was your equation and experience of working with Raj Babbar and Farooq Sheikh?
Raj Babbar was a senior respected star already then and so was Farooq. As actors, they were far more experienced than me. Farooq was very disciplined and kind.

Ketan Mehta once said in an interview, “I am not that short-tempered now, but I remember when I would shoot earlier, all these actors including Shah Rukh Khan in Maya Memsaab must have been struck by my matchbox throws at them like missiles”! How was it working with such a hot-headed director?
He exaggerates! He does lose his temper in his passion once in a while, but he is hardly someone who can be called ‘hot-headed’. The best part of working with Ketan is that he pushes you to excel and has the savviest interpretations of characters and their mercurial quality. Also, he gives actors a long rope and loves them to improvise and add what he calls ‘the magic’. He understands human behaviour like no one I have met ever and is the most stimulating to work with.

Was it tough for you and Shah Rukh Khan to perform the lovemaking scene? It was quite bold even by today’s standards…
Well, I did get giggly at first (a sign of being uncomfortable) but then you got to do what you got to do. I did brood a bit about being misunderstood at the time of release, but I think 99.99 % of people got the intention. In fact, I remember at a terrace party, someone told Shakti Samanta ji, who was the Chief of Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) then, that he was partial to allowing Ketan Mehta bold scenes but imposed cuts for even some dance moves for the others. And he graciously replied, “You make a piece of poetry Ketan has made, and I promise not to impose any cuts!” That was amazing!

Do you recall any memorable feedback that came your way after the release of Maya Memsaab in cinemas or film festivals?
Oh yes. There were many! It began on the day of the first public screening. I did not wait for the end and came back to the hotel. I recall I was at Ashoka Hotel in Delhi. An hour after the screening, there was a knock on my door and about 30 women came into my suite. They sat and spoke about how they had come from the screening and simply had to meet me, and it was the first film that ‘understood’ their inner core. They all had incidents to tell, and one even cried at how her ideals had let her down!

Then, I recall in Mumbai, two men in traditional dresses came all the way from Rajasthan, wearing their dhotiesangrakahas and pagris and sat in my living room. They told me how they had seen the film 17 times! They said it was about them. This is amazing as Flaubert, when asked about the book, had said “Madame Bovary, c’est moi” which means, “It’s about me”.

30 Years of Maya Memsaab EXCLUSIVE: Deepa Sahi gives a RARE interview; says “Shah Rukh Khan was a child at heart and a THOROUGH gentleman”; opens up on lovemaking scenes: “I did get giggly at first but then you got to do what you got to do”

I have yet to visit a country where someone has not called me “Maya” from across the road or on the street. The funny thing was that I read about a dish in a Delhi hotel menu which was called ‘Maya Memsaab ki pasand’. I had so many offers to launch soaps and perfumes named after Maya Memsaab but I was never into all that. So, I refused.

Do you have any plans to return to acting? You were phenomenal in Maya Memsaab and other films, and it’ll be great to have you back on screen…
Been there done that! I am not interested anymore. Even then I was too restless to be an actor as it involves long hours of waiting and I also hated getting make-up done and dressing up. Now I am too occupied with my new media technology hubs. Yes, I do miss live-action as I have been involved in our animation studio for so many years. So, I am producing some digital series currently. But I am not acting. At one point, I was interested in playing Indira Gandhi as I find her life fascinating and her contradictions really intriguing but not anymore.

How has the MAAC and Maya Movies journey been?
My life has been good. Time has flown like crazy! I thought I would spend 6 months setting up an animation studio and then getting professionals to run it. But it consumed all of my life nearly as there were no animators when we started which we did not know. It meant setting up schools to feed the studio. We ended up having over 70 franchises and 1600 animators in-house! And films became secondary as it took up so much time. However, all was good as Ketan makes everything good for me! I’m an absolute Ketan fan and if he tells me to jump off a cliff, I would, for him! And this is strange as when we began together, I told him, I am too restless and don’t think I will last long term. He said, “We will be together as long as we want and when we don’t want we shall see”. And as you know now it’s 30 years!

Would you like to direct again?
No. That was a lark but it’s too strenuous and demanding. My real passions are travelling, cats, and the latest phenomenon, AI!

If a remake of Maya Memsaab is made, which actor would you like to see playing the role of Maya, Dr Charu Das, Rudra and Lalit?
Ha ha! I am not answering that one; it means trouble!

Lastly, you have a close bond with Ketan Mehta. He said once in an interview, “I must be the craziest man she has met in her life, but I suppose she likes my madness, my films and my world view”. Your thoughts?
As I said, in Ketan, I have a perfect soulmate. He understands me perfectly, gives me the perfect space in life, and does not try to lead my life or dictate my life. I can’t survive with anyone dictating to me and he is the one who has never ever told me what to do, eat, wear, think, when to travel. He has never said “do this” or “don’t do this”. Nor do I do that to him, as I believe only if you give space can you demand it! And I have already warned him that he cannot get rid of me, the next 7 lives at least! He is a combination of Dennis the Menace and Superman (mentally) and has the same spirit of adventure that I have. The best is that he is the most non-mercenary man I have met, with never a bad word for anyone!

Yes, we are both crazy. I remember we had a pact that on every first monsoon shower, whatever the time, we have to drop whatever we are doing, meet up at Marine Drive and dance in the first rain together. We did that all for the first 10 years that we were together, till we got too damned busy! My mother often said “Ek hi thaili ke chatte batte” to us but in a good way!

More Pages: Maya Memsaab Box Office Collection


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Shah Rukh Khan allegedly begged former NCB officer Sameer Wankhede to not implicate Aryan in drugs bust case in leaked WhatsApp chats: “His spirit will be destroyed because of some vested people” : Bollywood News – Bollywood Hungama

It seems like the cruise drug bust case of 2021 by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) which left superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan in jail for 28 days is still very much in the spotlight. After Junior Khan was bailed and the charges against him were dropped, the case officer Sameer Wankhede has been in the news. The former NCB officer, who led the drugs bust case and has been accused of attempting to allegedly extort a whopping Rs. 25 crore from Shah Rukh Khan, produced the conversations on WhatsApp that he allegedly had with SRK.

Shah Rukh Khan allegedly begged former NCB officer Sameer Wankhede to not implicate Aryan in drugs bust case in leaked WhatsApp chats: “His spirit will be destroyed because of some vested people”

Now, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has accused Wankhede of allegedly extorting money from Shah Rukh Khan. Wankhede has filed a petition in court in response to the case against him and submitted a series of chats which he allegedly exchanged with a person named “Shahrukh Khan”.  As per a report by India Today TV, they have accessed the alleged WhatsApp chats between Wankhede and SRK in which the superstar begs to let go off Aryan Khan and not implicate him in a case that will leave him broken. The first part of the text reads, “Get your guys to go slow for Gods sake. I swear I will stand by you at all times to come and assist you with what all you are trying to achieve good. It’s a man’s promise and you know me enough to know I am good for it. I beg you to please have mercy in me and my family. We are a simple set of people and my son has been a bit wayward, but he doesn’t deserve being in a jail like a hardened criminal. You also know that. Please have a heart man, please I beg you.”

The next part reads, “I beg you man, please don’t let him be in that jail. He will break as a human being. His spirit will be destroyed because of some vested people. You promised you will reform my child not put him in a place where he may come out completely battered and broken.”

“If in any way without losing your integrity as an officer of law, you can help with whatever manner possible please. I will always be indebted. I don’t know the technicalities but if the department in charge feels all is ok and to your satisfaction. If then your authority furnishes a ‘ short reply ‘ with whatever conditions your team may have. I promise you whatever cooperation you would need from him will be done to the best of his abilities. Just please consider this request favourably it will be a huge favour because the family just wants him home, and not get stamped with having been a convict in a notorious prison. It will really help with his future and that’s why I am making this, beyond reasonable request as a father. I hope you consider it please, for his sake,” the text continues.

He adds, “Please tell them to go easy man and let me get my son home. Please. There is nothing more I can say or do but beg you. You have noticed my behaviour through all this. You know I would never stand by anything against what you are doing. I believed it when you said you are thinking of Aryan as your own and want to make him a better person. I haven’t done anything to not help my son get that reformation. I haven’t been in press. I haven’t made a statement. I have just believed in your goodness. Please please don’t let me down as a father.”

“As a good man, why would you subject him to this for some selfish people doing what they are doing. I promise you I will go to them and beg them to not say another word in front of you. Will use everything in my power to make sure they listen and retract whatever they have said. I promise you I will do all of it and won’t shirk away from begging them to stop. But please send my son home. You also know in your heart it’s been a bit too harsh for him by now. Please please I beg you as a father,” the text concludes.

In an earlier report in 2021, a witness of the NCB named Prabhakar Raghoji Sail recalled a call that was made by other witnesses KP Gosavi and Sanvile D’Souza to Shah Rukh Khan, demanding Rs. 25 crores from the superstar after the NCB authorities arrested Aryan Khan in the case. In the report, Sail had also asserted that after much deliberation, they had settled to Rs. 18 crores, followed by which the amount was to be distributed among NCB officers. He had said to Indian Express, “Out of the total Rs. 18 crores, Rs. 8 crore was meant for Narcotic Control Bureau (NCB) Zonal Director Sameer Wankhede while the balance amount was to be shared among them.”

As per recent reports, the CBI officers claim that the NCB officer Sameer Wankhede’s recent expenditure on foreign trips and luxurious purchases have ‘not been clearly justified’ when compared to his ‘declared income’. These reports suggest that Wankhede has once again been accused of corruption and bribery over his failure to submit an explanation regarding his recent over-the-top expenses. Although Sail passed away last year due to heart failure, the same allegations have been placed by the CBI officers after their raids at Wankhede’s residence.

Along with Sameer Wankhede, Vishwa Vijay Singh, and Ashish Ranjan too have been accused in the case along with KP Gosavi and Sanvile D’Souza for allegedly threatening the Khan family and using the Aryan Khan arrest case to extort a lumpsum from the wealthy film producer-entrepreneurs. The CBI has accused Gosavi of being given the privileges of accompanying the accused, coming to the NCB office even after the raid etc. because of which he even took selfies with Aryan Khan that went viral across platforms and even recorded his voice. The CBI observed that these privileges are never offered to independent witnesses. As per current reports, the CBI claims that Wankhede had given permission to Vishwa Singh for letting Gosavi handle the accused.

ALSO READ: Shah Rukh Khan was charged Rs. 25 crores as fine in the Aryan Khan drugs case, alleges CBI officer


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