In the last 10 years or so, Bollywood industry has shown growth by leaps and bounds. While new overseas territories have opened up and lapped up the Bollywood content, the business has also shown huge jump domestically.
100 crores was a dream benchmark for Bollywood films until Aamir Khan starrer Ghajini in 2008 arrived and started the 100 crores club. Soon after Ghajini, Aamir Khan & Rajkumar Hirani’s combo gave Bollywood its first 200 crores grosser film with 3 Idiots (2009). These two years established the fact that the industry is ready for growth and all it needs to produce is films with universal appeal.
However, it’s not possible to strike sixers on every ball and hence Bollywood filmmakers and stars struggled to come up with record breakers. Of course, there were some record-breaking openers but the content was not great to repeat the success of 3 Idiots and when the content was great, the films lagged by the initial. Starting from Dabangg in 2010 to Ek Tha Tiger in 2012 there were several films which had the potential, took great openings but couldn’t achieve 200 crores mark with small or big margins.
It was then in 2013 when Bollywood got three more 200 crore grossers with Shah Rukh Khan & Deepika Padukone starrer Chennai Express, Hrithik Roshan’s Krrish 3 & Aamir Khan & Katrina Kaif starrer Dhoom 3.
D3, in fact, was so big that it earned 280.25 crores at Indian Box Office proving yet again that we just need a right film to hit the bull’s eye. It also proved that Bollywood is ready to aim for 300 crores club now.
Aamir Khan only did the task as he along with Hirani treated the audience with PK in 2014. The film was a historic success and started the 300 crores club. It earned 339.50 crores at that time. Meanwhile, other stars were also trying to get more films in 200 crores club & 300 crores club. Shah Rukh Khan & Deepika Padukone’s Happy New Year did the trick for 200 crores club. Salman Khan got a Kick for 200 crores club with ‘Kick‘ in 2014. He soon joined Aamir in 300 crore club with films like Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015), Sultan (2016) & Tiger Zinda Hai (2017). Aamir himself came back in 2016 with Dangal which earned 387.39 crores and made a statement that we are ready to start 400 crores club now.
However, call it bad luck or lack in the script sense of our biggest superstars lately that they have constantly failed to crack the entry in 400 crores club. Aamir Khan himself had a big chance with 2018’s Thugs Of Hindostan. He even got the historic opening but the content failed big time and the film couldn’t even touch 200 crores mark. Meanwhile, Telugu film Baahubali 2 proved to be huge in India and collected more than 500 crores just with Hindi version in 2017. Hollywood release Avengers: Endgame this year earned 365.50 crores compared to it’s own prequel Avengers: Infinity War which earned 222.69 crores in India. That’s the kind of growth Hollywood has shown here.
It’s been 2 years since Baahubali 2 and almost 3 years since Dangal, but Bollywood is still struggling to get it’s own 400 crores club movie. While in the last few years a lot of experiments have paid off and there have been several surprise Blockbusters. What we need now is our Superstars to set their priorities right and come with the universal content which can help the industry set the bar higher.
Meanwhile, we have upcoming films like War, Dabangg 3, Brahmastra, Sooryavanshi and Lal Singh Chaddha which if offer the right content to the audience can do wonders at the Box Office and can start our very own elite 400 crores club.