Battle Between Raees and Kaabil Is Started Even Much Before The Release
Shah Rukh Khan‘s last two films (Dilwale, Fan) disastrously failed at the Box Office, resulting the film distributors a heavy loss and to think twice should they give their screens to SRK’s upcoming movie ‘Raees’ or not. At this stage, facing another clash with Hrithik Roshan’s Kaabil (which is also scheduled to release on 26th January, 2017) is not usually something less than a nightmare to the producers and distributors. And to a solution to it, Raees makers have already started applying a deal on the distributors that will ensure Raees more number of theatres than its opponent Kaabil.
According to a leading exhibitor, the distributor of Raees, who also released Baahubali and Mirzya, has signed a deal with single-screen exhibitors making it compulsory to exhibit the SRK starrer movie in all four shows on the eve of Republic Day 2017, “A number of single screen theatres inadvertently fell into the trap because of pressure tactics. Also, let’s not forget that Raees is a Shah Rukh Khan film and he goes all out to woo exhibitors and ensure that he blocks a majority of theatres. He did it during the release of his last few films, too.”
The news that exhibitors are being pressurized to give larger amount of screens to Raees on the bait of Baahubali 2 The Conclusion is also accepted by Ramesh Sippy, a Mumbai Distributor, who recently acquired Kaabil for the territory of Mumbai (Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka and Gujarat). Mr. Sippy confirms, “It is not a deal but the distributors of Raees pressurised a section of exhibitors with a promise that they would not get future films, particularly the second installment of Baahubali, if they do not screen Raees in all the four shows. Baahubali 2 has been used as a bait to pressurise exhibitors to sign Raees in the maximum number of shows.”
Sippy adds that, this kind of “arm-twisting” is now often everytime two big films come up for a clash, “There is an effort to block the maximum number of theatres. The exhibitors who have signed up are not quite coming out in the open. Either way, ultimately, the merits of the two films will speak for themselves,” he said.
Sippy further said that clashes are not good for business and film industry at all, “Dividing the audience is not good for the two films. Both will lose their audiences,” he says, adding that he would have been happier if Kaabil was scheduled for a solo release, “It is the kind of film that is likely to take the box-office by storm, with the role that Hrithik has in it,” he says.
On the clash between Raees and Kaabil, the Kaabil producer Rakesh Roshan expressed that the clash of the two films could have been avoided, but it is now inevitable, “I had announced the film (Kaabil) last year in February and if somebody else is coming on that date, it is not ethical and not my fault. It is absolutely unethical to come on somebody else’s date. It not only plays havoc with the chain of theatres, but is bad for the producers, distributors and exhibitors as well. If anything, the people involved are only gaining in terms of their ego. After that, they will be repentant for the rest of their lives as to why they did this,” he says.
Well, this is not the first time, we got to see such situation during 3 clashes – SRK starrer ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan‘ Vs Ajay Devgn starrer ‘Son Of Sardar‘ in Diwali 2012, then SRK starrer ‘Dilwale’ Vs Ranveer starrer ‘Bajirao Mastani‘ during Diwali last year and finally Hrithik Roshan starrer ‘Mohenjodaro‘ Vs Akshay Kumar starrer ‘Rustom’ during Independence week this year.
Interestingly, all ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’, ‘Dilwale’ and ‘Mohenjodaro’ failed miserably despite having greater amount of screens. Now it will be pretty interesting to see after the last box-office clash of the year between Ajay Devgn and Karan Johar ended with both films doing middling business, what the fate has destined to the two big releases on a bigger clash on Republic Day 2017 and with whom will have the favour of luck this time! While both the main actors (Shahrukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan) of the films is suffering from ill luck in the box office.