Diwali has not always brought in wealth and happiness in Bollywood. This year’s Diwali releases look more than merely interesting and has too many expectations from them. Yash Chopra’s untimely death has quadrupled the expectations from his last directorial venture Jab Tak Hai Jaan which has been deemed as the climax and culmination of his legendary career as a film maker. Son Of Sardaar despite seeming to miniscule in comparison to that has left no stone unturned and have ensured that this Diwali box-office entertainment will be to the hilt. Trade Analysts confirm that both the films were walking neck to neck in terms of publicity, till the death of Yash-ji who succumbed to Dengue shortly before the ‘King of Romance’ was all set to shoot the last song sequence in the Swiss Alps, a destination he popularized in Bollywood films. Jab Tak Hai Jaan has an obvious edge as being the last gift of Yash Chopra to his audiences providing them with YRF kind of magical passion and romance.
With such buzz building around the films and the publicity hypes almost warring with each other, we can’t help but look at the Diwali releases of the past few years. Diwali doesn’t necessarily mean crackling happiness for Bollywood. Thankfully this Diwali does seem to be excessively appealing but taking a close look at the past Diwali releases, they have often gone a step forward in dampening the festive spirits of the audiences. Koimoi brings to you a list of the biggest Diwali flops in Bollywood –
This movie could have been so much better than what Shah Rukh Khan claimed it to be. A soggy reception from critics and a very average lukewarm reception from audiences made this film to be an absolute dud. The crazy fan following of the teeming billions of SRK, the internationally acclaimed singer Akon’s Chammak Challo, or even the ridiculously large amounts spent in the publicity of the film could spare the audience from this disaster. This film did badly more because of the hype it created and how it failed to elevate the film to those heights. The film has a few successes to its name, but in audience’s memory it will be remembered as a disaster!
Action Replayy (2010)
This movie was a blemish on the names of two of Bollywood’s biggest stars ever – Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Akshay Kumar. Given their fan following the films fared beyond pathetic at the box office. No Akshay Kumar film has opened that low at box office in recent times. Being an ambitious storyline, the film lacked wit and drama both. The critics shunned the film and audiences proclaimed it to be a disaster. The film dampened the spirits of all that Diwali, mostly of those associated with the film.
Laden with sophisticated underwater stunt scenes, the film starred action heroes – Sanjay Dutt and Akshay Kumar. The film will be remembered as one of its kind for dealing with a plot so Hollywood in its outlook. It was quite a bold choice of story. But the film obviously couldn’t create ripples at box office. The thrill from the thriller was absolutely missing and the direction was terrible. The movie bombed badly at the box office and couldn’t run at all beyond the first week.
Ranbir Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor’s acting debut was an ambitious film of Sanjay Leela Bhansali. Based on the short story ‘White Nights’ by Fyodor Dostoevsky was an unusually, intriguing film. An overdose of dull blue with a damp plot, people would remember this film for the sheer reason how badly it bombed at the box office opposite Shah Rukh Khan’s Om Shanti Om which launched Deepika Padukone that year. The performances of debut actors Ranbir and Sonam were conspicuously noticed by audiences and critics.
Shirish Kunder, better known as the spouse of choreographer-turned-director Farah Khan, started his career as a director with this film. The film starred Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar after the mega success of Mujhse Shaadi Karogi and also explored the lesser seen chemistry between Salman and Preity, which the critics had great expectations from. The film received average reviews from critics but saw an instant drop in collections on the second day due to huge competition from Shah Rukh Khan starrer Farhan Akhtar’s films Don. The film’s collections were beyond disappointing and remain to be one of biggest box office Diwali flops.
Kyon Ki (2005)
Priyadarshan’s directed Kyon Ki… starring Salman Khan and Kareena Kapoor was a remake of Priyadarshan’s Malayalam film Thalavattam which was released in 1986. Salman’s performance was appreciated by critics but except that the film turned out to be a flop at the box office. Stars like Jackie Shroff and Om Puri, despite a good script couldn’t pull through the film.
Amrita Pritam’s Punjabi novel ‘Pinjar’ the considered to be finest work of literature based on Partition theme. The film won National Award for Best Feature film on National Integration and starred actors like Urmila Matondkar, Manoj Bajpai, Sanjay Suri, all recognized for their skills and caliber in acting. Despite a great plot and good performances, the film failed to gather audiences at theatres because of it wrong timing of release. Watching a film that painful in character, people thought, would just spoil the festive spirit of fun and frolic. The film was declared a flop despite being a great film.
Jeena Sirf Merre Liye (2002)
Starring Kareena Kapoor and Tusshar Kapoor, the film is an unusual story of an unusual love story which was far from being impressive. It bordered on boredom and a film which cannot definitely find a place in public memory due to being a morose film.
Diwali’s crackers don’t boom every film that is released during this time; neither does Goddess Lakshmi smile at all alike. In the end, everyone makes films for the audiences and if they are impressed by the film, nothing else matters. As the advance bookings for both Jab Tak Hai Jaan and Son Of Sardaar are closely competing with each other, here’s Koimoi wishing them both good luck and hopes they get their desired as well as deserved share from Goddess Lakshmi this Diwali.