Can you think of the atmosphere inside the cinema hall when a Salman Khan or Shah Rukh Khan film releases? Crackers, hooting, whistles, dancing and what not. Basically, audience in the cinema hall celebrate these two superstars, irrespective of how the content of the film turns out to be. Leaving the films aside, the crowd that accumulates outside Galaxy Apartments (Salman) and Mannat (Shah Rukh Khan) on their Birthdays is something that has to be witnessed to be believed. Fans leave no stone unturned to get a glimpse of their superstars, and this is a phenomenon that very few can boost about.
In-fact, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that in the last 29 years, only two stars have managed to attain this level of blind fan-following across India (Hrithik Roshan caame close to become a humongous superstar, but lost his path this decade). But now, the times are changing. Slowly and steadily, content is becoming the new superstar. We are now in an era when a well packaged film with a popular star will always find the audience and take a flying start. The time has arrived when the audiences seem to be wanting to watch those films which have an exciting trailer, thereby moving away from the stars. Leaving the future aside, even in today’s time you won’t see audience celebrating films of other stars, but they are raking in the opening numbers that are similar to few of the biggest Bollywood stars. Perfect example being Sanju, which has emerged the biggest opener of the year, but despite packed houses, we didn’t see the in theater audience reaction anywhere close to the Khan films.
This is indeed a positive change that is slowly taking place as the stars now will concentrate on the content and put their stardom to proper use. The stars would realize that the audience will pay a bomb to watch them, only if the trailer suggests that the content is exciting. Basically, the star would be as good as the content, however the reach of the star will determine reach of the film. For eg. A good content film starring Ranbir Kapoor or Ranveer Singh or Varun Dhawan will earn a lot more than the same film starring Sushant Singh Rajput, or Sidharth Malhotra. The stardom of these stars will provide a certain amount of additional cushion to the film both in terms of initial as well as lifetime collections, however they might not be able to assure a bare minimum opening to a film that is looking bad from the trailers.
To conclude, going by the way things are progressing, it seems that Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan would end up being remembered as the last two stars who generated mass hysteria in the cinema halls. (We might be wrong, but this is an assumption) We would have stars, rather many stars but content would eventually end up being a superstar. The concept of superstardom got destroyed recently in hollywood as well wherein the superhero films and other franchises have become a lot bigger than the stars who are a part of the films. Similarly, that day isn’t far when even here, films here would become a lot bigger than stars. Cherish the stardom of Salman and Shah Rukh by enjoying their films at the single screens as such stuff might not arise. And trust me, it is worth an experience.