Will Mental be the highest grosser of 2013? – QnA

Joginder Tuteja answers 5 questions from Indicine readers.

Q. If ‘Mental’ releases this year, does it have a chance to be this year’s highest grosser? – Himesh Mankad

First and foremost there is no official word yet on the actual release date of ‘Mental’. What one is hearing so far is just media-speak though one can’t discount the fact that a lot also has to do with the PR machinery at work. That too is fair since it is keeping the film in news. As for it being the highest grosser of 2013, such things can’t be predicted till the First Look is out. No one could have expected ‘Aashiqui 2’ to be marching towards the 50 crore club. Having said that, top choicest for year’s biggest grossers stay on to be ‘Dhoom 3’ and ‘Krrish 3’, both of which have been in news for good reasons since two years.

Q. Is the decision of stars to do only one or two films a year affecting Bollywood? Is it good or bad? – Alisha Dhami

To each his own, though considering the fact Bollywood is still largely a star-driven industry as these are the films that actually register enhanced footfalls, more the merrier. More films with superstars do result in more jobs for an increased count of cast and crew since budgets are larger. This is why superstars (example Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn) who make 3-4 films a year result in added opportunities for an entire supply chain (production, distribution, exhibition and of course consumer). Ideally a top actor should be releasing at least a couple of films a year.

Q. ‘Ek Thi Daayan’ has done average business. Do you think it will affect Emraan’s next release ‘Ghanchakkar’ in any way? – ST

As of now Emraan won’t be affected since ‘Ek Thi Daayan’ was an offbeat film of sorts and Emraan’s performance didn’t come under the scanner. Moreover, he has done well enough, both commercially (Raaz 3) as well as critically (Shanghai) during last year to not get impacted by a movie or two not covering the distance. Moreover, he has an enviable line up ahead in the form of ‘Ungli’, (tentatively titled) ‘White Lies’, an untitled film with Kareena Kapoor and another one expected with Bhatts that would ensure that his place in Top-10 is secure.

Q. Do clashes between big movies on holiday provide free publicity and increase box office expectations? – Virendra Nath

Of course yes, you are right on both counts. With Indian audience known for being fan-crazy, a clash of biggies results in fans of clashing stars take it upon themselves to keep their idols in news, hence resulting in the kind of publicity that even PRs can’t generate. As for the box office expectations, that too sees a good rise as the best theatre chain as well as screens are made available due to the hype. Having said that, all these plusses are diluted to a good extent by the footfalls that are impacted due to the clash. Eventually it all evens out.

Q. How will Kareena Kapoor’s new films do? What about her film with Emraan? Will their pairing work? – Alisha Dhami

As of now Kareena Kapoor has two films on floors (‘Satyagraha’, ‘Gori Tere Pyaar Mein’) and another (with Emraan Hashmi) which is expected to begin soon. ‘Satyagraha’ is a multi-starrer which means all gains and losses would be divided between quite a few heavyweights who are coming together for the film. Given the fact that Prakash Jha’s last two films (Chakravyuha, Aarakshan) were relatively dry, one waits to see how he has upped the entertainment quotient in ‘Satyagraha’. ‘Gori Tere Pyaar Mein’ should be winner though as long as it doesn’t go the ‘Ek Main Aur Ek Tu’ way. Her film with Emraan should be interesting.

Joginder Tuteja tweets @tutejajoginder

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  • @All srk fans : whether srk book the screens or UTV, in both the cases srk power is not as same as before. If srk is booking the screens then he is scare of losing it or if UTV is booking it means they no longer have faith in srk star power. for those who are saying Salman was scared to release his movie during Eid, FYI Exhibitors will give anything to run Salman’s movie n he or his producers/distributors are not even pre-booking the screens. You can Imagine what will be the scenario if Salman movies do pre-booking like srk movies. But I have faith Salman will never do or allow it for his movies. Poor srk despite pre-booking he is struggling to reach 100 crores.

  • @boss. What u expect UTV to do, sit simply without booking any screen, look at sky and sing a song?. Their job is to book screen dude and ensure their films get as much as screens possible by using their star’s name. Ajay devgan couldn’t able to prove anything, did he?. He did gained lot of publicity for his SOS and it worked in his favour. IF YRF did any wrong then sure ajay devgan would win the case. IF megastar and small stars films comes together then they both shud get equal screen space?, r u trying to say dat duffer?

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