Biggest Grosser of the Year Analysis: 1989 – 2014

Nearly 300 Hindi films release every year and only one film tops them all. In today’s times, it takes a combination of good content, a major superstar and a genre with universal appeal for a film to generate more than Rs 200 crore at the box office.

Salman SRK Aamir Hrithik Sunny

The biggest grosser of the year is also the film that has widely been accepted and brings the maximum number to people to theatres. In this day and age, with prices of movie tickets soaring, piracy increasing and various options for entertainment (like television and video-sharing websites), it’s tough to bring audiences to theatres.

Hence, topping the ‘biggest grosser list’ is nothing short of a major achievement. Below we have compiled a list of the highest grossing films from 1989 to 2014.

Maine Pyaar Kiya (1989)Dil (1990)DDLJ (1995)Kaho Na Pyaar Hai (2000)Border (1997)
Saajan (1991)Raja Hindustani (1996)Kuch Kuch Hota Hai (1998)Koi Mil Gaya (2003)Gadar (2001)
Hum Aapke Hain Kaun (1994)Ghajini (2008)Devdas (2002)Dhoom 2 (2006)
Hum Saath Saath Hain (1999)3 Idiots (2009)Veer Zaara (2004)
No Entry (2005)Dhoom 3 (2013)Om Shanti Om (2007)
Dabangg (2010)PK (2014)
Bodyguard (2011)
Ek Tha Tiger (2012)
Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015)

Some interesting points:

  • Salman Khan has delivered the highest number of ‘biggest grossers of the year’ 8 times since 1989, which also happens to be the year he made his debut. His best years were between 2010 – 2012, when he managed to beat his contemporaries for three continuous years.
  • But there is one special record that not many others can boast of. Salman is the ONLY superstar who has two ‘biggest grossers of the decade’. Maine Pyaar Kiya and Hum Aapke Hai Kaun were the biggest grossers of the 80s and 90s respectively. The 2000s belonged to Aamir, as 3 Idiots was the highest grosser of the previous decade.
  • Apart from the 5 biggest hits of the year to his credit, Shah Rukh Khan has given the 2nd biggest hit of the year for a record 8 times – Deewana (1991), Karan Arjun (1995), Dil To Pagal Hai (1997), Mohabbatein (2000), Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham (2001), Kal Ho Na Ho (2003), Main Hoon Na (2004) and Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi (2008). He has also consistently made it to the Top 5 since his debut in 1992.
  • Salman has delivered Top 2 biggest grossers of the year three times. Hum Saath Saath Hain and Biwi No. 1 in 1999, Bodyguard and Ready in 2011, Ek Tha Tiger and Dabangg 2 in 2012.
  • 2006 belonged to Hrithik Roshan as Dhoom 2 and Krrish were the 1st and 2nd biggest hits of the year respectively. Hrithik has also ruled the box office in 2000 (Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai) and 2003 (Koi Mil Gaya).
  • Ajay Devgn has three 2nd biggest grosser of the year to his credit. Phool Aur Kaante in 1991, Pyaar to Hona Hi Tha in 1998 and Golmaal 3 in 2010.
  • Akshay Kumar came close to giving the biggest hit of the year as many as 4 times. Mohra in 1994, Welcome in 2007 were the 2nd biggest hits while Singh is King and Rowdy Rathore came 3rd in 2008 and 2012 respectively.
  • Hrithik and Salman are the only big stars to deliver the biggest grosser of the year with their debut films.
  • Amongst the top stars, Ajay Devgn, Akshay Kumar and Ranbir Kapoor are yet to deliver the year’s biggest grosser, something that Sunny Deol managed twice with Border (1997) and Gadar (2001).
  • In terms of footfalls, Salman topped the 1980s (Maine Pyaar Kiya) and 1990s (Hum Aapke Hain Kaun). Gadar was the most watched movie of 2000’s, a film that sold many more tickets than 3 Idiots.


  • These guys have topped box-office right from their debut. Salman for MPK, Aamir for Dil, Srk for DDLJ, Hrithik for KNPH. Ranbir still has a long way to go to give biggest hit of the year. Impressive list. Hope Ajay and Akshay get their well deserved biggest hit soon!

    • Arjunkapurfan, if u r really a ranbir fan then plz don’t overhype Ranbir. In this way u wil make ranbir haters here like u did for arjunkapur.
      Btw, come to the point Tamasha has no chance becoz many more biggies like BB, PRDP, srk next with rohit shetty releasing this year. Even @sss type people don’t predict tamasha wil beat these biggies.

  • aamir khan is the best of the bests… he had masterpiece films more then any other actors and he had 5 all time blockbuster

    • Finally , the conclusion is ;

      King of Box office – Amir Khan
      King of Quality movies – Amir Khan

      King of Block busters – Salman Khan

      King of Acting – Sharukh/ Amir
      King of Romance – Sharukh Khan
      King of Awards -Sharukh Khan

      Finally King of Bollywood – Sharukh Khan

      King of King – King Khan…

  • Akshay had chance deliver years biggest grosser if he was in hera pheri 3 and releases in festive period.
    And he can still do it if he gets solo release & good content film in major festiv period

  • WOW great article indicine! It clearly shows Salman is a much bigger star than his contemporaries. He has given 2 decades biggest grosser, whereas Aamir has given 1 decade biggest grosser. Proud of being a Salmir fan.

  • woah…so Srk has 5 highest, 10 second highest, 5 third highest and 4 fourth highest grosser of the year in his 23 years of career…that’s the why he’s called as the most consistent actor :)

  • Everywhere Salman Salman Salman, Dear indicine team, you make me happy and happy. Thanks for this article.
    @Indicine, please publish about debutant director with 3 khans. That will be an interesting article.

    My humble request to you indicine.

  • @indicine, u missed the biggest record of all time….HAHK was the highest grosser of 20th century.

    • @Suheel: No bro because Sholay’s lifetime gross was 15cr. & HAHK gross was 69cr. I agree that Sholay is the rank one movie in ruling the boxoffice for maximum number of years (1975-1993) i.e. 19years(maximum by any film) but in 1994 HAHK crossed all records & became the highest grosser of 20th century & ruled till 2000.
      DDLJ in 1995 earned 61cr. (8cr less than HAHK)

  • It is consistency that matters SRK was consistent throughout. Even if he gives a flop but it followed by many blockbusters,superhits or hits. SRK never had so called bad phase in his career after 1995.

  • Best years of SRK’s career -> 1993 , 1995 , 1998 , 2003 , 2004 , 2007 … & all these years 2 more than 2 SRK films released …

  • Today i checked the BO collection section of all actors. It shows the success ratio and Hit ratio of the Actors.Interesting .Of course Sharukh top the list..

    Sharukh: success ratio- 56.3, hit ratio- 49.9
    Amir : success ratio- 48.7, hit ratio- 28.2
    Hrithik : success ratio- 50, hit ratio- 50
    salman : success ratio- 46.5, hit ratio- 36.6
    Ranbir : success ratio- 63.6, hit ratio- 45.5
    Ajay : success ratio- 24.7, hit ratio- 16.9
    Akshay :success ratio- 31.6, hit ratio- 19.8

  • SRK has the golden chance this year to give the highest grosser of the year…He has the best release date (Xmas),best mass dir. (Rohit Shetty)…..

    • srk can only dream to give highest grosser of the year. and yeah he has already tried his luck with Christmas in the past in 2011 but guess what it was at 4th spot and couldn’t break ghajini’s record. so aamir’s movies break all records on Christmas not because of release date but because of him. akshay and salman also tried. salman came close but still he couldn’t give highest grosser of the year. so Christmas only belongs to aamir.

  • Srk has been quite unlucky on multiple occasions since his movies has fell short of becoming the highest grossers by small margins.

  • Akshay would have given the highest grosser of 2007 in Welcome had Aamir’s TZP not clashed with it..
    Welcome(70crs) with clash Aamir’s masterpiece TZP
    OSO (82crs),clash with poor Saawariyan.

  • Sunny Deol was one of the biggest stars of the 80s and 90s but his reticent and shy personality dented his progress further.Also age was’nt with him.

    • that’s excuse. even aamir doesn’t attend award functions, maintains low profile, keeps himself away from controversies(Except films controversies), and still gives highest grossers of the year. talaash was pure multiplex movie and only made for niche audience, so it was anyways expected to be just hit no matter even if it had any other superstar in it. and it was indeed a clean hit. so, you can’t say that sonny’s shy personality stopped him.

  • Ha Ha Ha, so called king has only 5 highest grossers of the year while aamir and salman have 6 and 8 respectively. that’s why srk is the third khan. I don’t believe in so called consistency of clean hits. srk has only 1 all time highest grosser (CE) which held the record only for 3 months. while salman has 2 (MPK and HAHK) and aamir has 4 (Ghajini, 3I, D3 and PK). so it can be concluded that aamir and salman are far ahead and much bigger stars than srk.

    • Yaa , one more thing; so called King still struggling for his first disaster movie while other two khan have 3 numbers each…poor SRK..

    • Salman has one (HAHK)….While SRK has the highest grosser with fewest number of free days – 6 days…;-)

    • Also Salman’s HAHK record remained for 8years and Aamir’s 3idiots record remained for 4years. And king’s ce’s record remained for only 3months.

    • 1.KING KHAN—-28 HITS
      2.salman khan—-22 hits

      3.amir khan—-12 hits

      so who is teesra khan?don’t forget ROHIT-KING KHAN is coming this christmas.ready to burn in soon.

    • @sss : Looks like you already started the promotions for Rohit-SRK next. Do come up with some funny lines like ‘Chaplin coming with 400 crs Tsunami’ ‘King coming with 400 crores Earthquake’ etc.. Do ensure to chant this at the end of every comment !!!!! :-P

    • @Sheheer: SRK’s Koyla was a disaster.

      @sss- Aamir has done very less films in comparison to other 2…..In a newspaper article I read that, total number of collection of all Aamir movies is much more than other 2 despite he has done less number of movies than other two .Salman was on second place & SRK on third..

    • @ Tiger – Let Salman give a highest grosser in today’s time of tough competition…HAHK ke bad barso gujar geya.

  • Two of my favorites Aamir and Hrithik have consistently given big grosser and maintained quality of movies-a rare feat to achieve.

  • But this “Highest Grosser of the Decade” is’nt a good parameter at all.

    A film releasing in 2019 will definitely have an edge over a film releasing in 2011 due to devaluation of currency,increasing inflation,more no. of screens!!

    • it’s true. Even after collecting more than 220 cr, CE and K3 didn’t become highest grosser of 2013 ,cause there is Dhoom 3.
      It’s fair to list the Top 3

    • many matters factr here…footfals/budget/collcetion etc etc…thats why Gadar is bigger hit than Ghajni/3 idiots/Dhoom 2.

    • @Sheheer: Bro, I think now everyone knows that K3 did not earn 200cr in reality. It’s real lifetime trade figure is only 185cr.

    • One could use that arguement for the 1989 and 2009 case but HAHK was released in 1994 and SUPPOSEDLY our self proclaiming King was ruling the roost in 90’s but in 5 yrs he never came close to toppling Salmans HAHK….!

    • @BK Thullu.. Then please explain how a 1994 released HAHK became highest grosser of the decade..after that movie there was DDLJ, DTPH and KKHH which came.. So ur theory is baseless..

  • @Indicine, you forget Anil kapoor,
    Beta- 1992 highest grosser
    No entry- 2005 highest grosser.
    This year will be Salman’s movie top no doubt.

  • @Indicine, you forget one more interesting point.
    Highest grosser with debutant 3 time.
    1. MPK
    Please add this point. Thanks

  • A brilliant article . Giving the highest grosser of the year is a big deal . Because everytime you cannot expect that the records will be broken and the movie will be highest grosser of the year . For Example, MPK released in 1989 and it came really close but could not break the record of Sholay . Krrish also came close but eventually Dhoom : 2 broke the record of Gadar . OSO came close but could not break the record of D2 . Ghajini broke the record of D2 . RNBDJ also broke D2’s record but Ghajini did first . ETT came really close but could not break the record of 3 Idiots . Akki and Ajay have done really good but sometimes other movies released during the year have done exceptionally well . Mohra was the 2nd highest grosser of 1994 in the same year HAHK broke all records . The most important aspect is that since 8 years only holiday releases become highest grossers . Have a look :
    2007 – OSO – Diwali
    2008 – Ghajini – Christmas
    2009 – 3 Idiots – Christmas
    2010 – Dabangg – Eid
    2011 – Bodyguard – Eid
    2012 – ETT – Eid
    2013 – Dhoom 3 – Christmas
    2014 – PK – Christmas
    The last movie to become the highest grosser without holiday release was Dhoom : 2 in 2006 .
    2011 – Bodyguard –

  • @INDICINE u know if those years a holiday was not at all important to make a good film a blockbuster.
    So even movies with youngsters of that time, Sallu, Aamir were able to give his in their initial years.
    But now even av movie can’t get to be the highest grosser unless it releases on a holiday. Even the khans would fail to do so.
    So what I mean is that now it’s quite tough for a younger actor to get into the list unless he gets a holiday release.
    Hope our youngest superstar gets into this list soon.

  • Let any khan deliver the biggest grosser now without a holiday release. Then blame other actors. Now fans of khans are not in a position to point fingers at others.
    P.S. – I like khans and respect two of them because they can act and act very well.

    • Nobody stops others to release their movies in holydays. U better tell others to release their movies in holydays rather advising khans to release their movies in non holydays.

  • Interesting article.Still many want to prove Srk inferior to his contemporaries…Waqt waqt ki baat ha..from 2000-2007 Srk-HR ruled.Next Seven years amir-salman ruled.
    @suchit Ok srk had only for 4 months but why there is not a single highest grosser of all time by salman in last 20 years….I think he is the biggest star according to his fans…bhai agar srk nai ha na tou salman be ab nai ha…amir is ruling and salman cant deliver highest grosser of all time 4 mahina k lia nai tou aik din k lia hi sallu bhai..bache khush ho jaen ge

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