Esha Razdan | Last Modified - Jan 01, 2013, 12:46 PM IST
Last year began on a very positive note with ‘Agneepath’ jiggling the cash registers. New benchmarks were set as most films made the 100 crore club. Trade pundits are even more optimistic of 2013, but can’t stop raving about 2012 – the Year of Revolution in Bollywood.
Film critic and trade expert Taran Adarsh said, “What made 2012 special was the acceptance of films that were considered dicey till a few years ago. While masala films called the shots and hit the pot of gold, 'experimental' films like ‘Paan Singh Tomar’, ‘Kahaani’, ‘Vicky Donor’ and ‘Barfi!, which were considered risky till a few years ago, also achieved unimaginable targets as far as BO was concerned.”
He sheds light on the anticipated highest grossers of the year end which brand value had attributed to them. “For ‘Talaash’, ‘Khiladi 786’ and ‘Dabangg 2’ the spurt in business was expected to be unimaginable in the domestic as well as international markets. Aamir Khan, Akshay Kumar and Salman Khan are influential enough to rewrite the rules of the game.”
According to trade analyst and film critic Komal Nahta, most of the releases of last year had been successful. In fact, these films turned out to be surprise packages for both distributors and experts who had a certain perception about them. Some of these films even crossed the bounds of the 100 crore club with ‘Agneepath’ paving the way for the rest with a whopping Rs.120 crores in its kitty.
Giving an overview of how the film industry fared at the box-office in 2012, Vinod Mirani said, “‘Ek Tha Tiger’ topped the chart with almost 200 crores as it wrapped up with Rs. 199.5 crore followed by ‘Rowdy Rathore’ with Rs.140 crore, ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’ as second runner up with Rs. 121 crore, ‘Agneepath’ and ‘Barfi!’ on the fourth and fifth position with Rs. 120 and Rs.105 crore respectively. ‘Joker’, ‘Players’, ‘Agent Vinod’, ‘Shanghai’, ‘Ferrari Ki Sawaari’, ‘Tezz’ and ‘Heroine’ turned out to be losers.”
As for surprise packages, Mirani said, “‘OMG!’ was the big surprise of last year and did three times the business of its cost amounting to Rs. 82 crores. ‘Kahaani’ was another fabulous project which scored Rs. 60 crores followed by ‘Ishaqzaade’ with a surprising Rs. 48-50 crores. The most loved film of the year was ‘Vicky Donor’ and it fetched Rs. 40 crores. ‘English Vinglish’, the comeback of veteran actor Sri Devi, garnered Rs. 35 crores.”
However, the biggest miss of the year according to Mirani was ‘Talaash’. “There is no price tag on it because as per the market reports it was sold for Rs. 90 crores. When I had a word with the distributors, they said, ‘We are just releasing it on the behalf of the producers.’ So, one can easily categorize the film amongst the disappointments of the year.”
Trade expert Vikas Mohan from Super Cinema put forward an interesting aspect that 2012 was the year of primarily content-driven films like ‘Vicky Donor’, ‘Kahaani’, ‘Paan Singh Tomar’, ‘Barfi!’ which did exceptionally well at the box-office. Emphasizing on the factor of ‘correct timings’ he elaborated, “Star-driven films like ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, ‘Dabangg 2’ and many more sailed through because of their respective releases on holidays be it Eid or Christmas. But, again, such films especially ‘Dabangg 2’, ‘Khiladi 786’ and ‘Talaash’ which got an amazing opening fell flat eventually due to lack of content. Chartbuster music too couldn’t bail them out.”
He also stressed on the term ‘entertainment value’ which is of utmost importance. “If one can’t sit through the film, it means it lacks entertainment. One can’t test the patience of a cinegoer. Last year was very successful and we are optimistic about this year too which boasts off some attention grabbing films such as ‘Krrish 3’. Hrithik Roshan is surely one of the main attractions of 2013 as he didn’t show up at all last year after ‘Agneepath’. Another highlight is Aamir Khan who will be seen playing a negative character for the first time. Shah Rukh Khan will pamper his fans with ‘Chennai Express’. There is no room for success when it comes to remakes such as ‘Himmatwala’ and ‘Zanjeer’ as the audience is honestly not interested in watching the old wine served in new bottles again.”
Mirani agreed with Vikas and added, “Remakes are just waste of time. They will fizzle out eventually after the release. A handful of films such as Vidya Balan and Emraan Hashmi’s ‘Ghanchakkar’, ‘Ek Thi Daayan’ and ‘Ragini MMS 2’, both made under Ekta Kapoor’s production banner, look extremely promising. Less money involved with tremendous buzz created by Ekta will work wonders for this film. Ranveer Singh and Sonakshi Sinha’s ‘Lootera’ and Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone’s ‘Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani’ will involve a curiosity factor around it.”
He went on to add, “Ranbir, in fact, has become a part of the ‘One Horse Race’ of his generation who can now pull off any film with conviction no matter who he is paired opposite. Films like ‘Race 2’, ‘Yamla Pagla Deewana 2’, ‘Krrish 3’ and ‘Dhoom 3’ will come with loads of expectations considering the prequels which have become brands now. Farhan Akhtar’s ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’ though has created enough buzz and will be unable to woo the audience as the genre of sports is not something audience craves for.”
Taran Adarsh presented a promising picture and concluded, “The volume of business witnessed ample growth last year and with more and more screens opening up, 2013 might witness a further boom with the 100 crore mark being referred to in the past tense. Hopefully, a new target will be set.”