There have been flops and disasters in the past and there would be flops and disasters in months to come as well. However, the failure of Jab Harry Met Sejal has been more disheartening than anything else in the past. Reason being that one just could not foresee anything starring Shah Rukh Khan in the lead to see such a rapid downfall. He is one superstar who has built the kind of credibility over last 25 odd years that invariably there has been universal content on display film after film. It isn’t as if each of his films has been super awesome or wildly entertaining – however, he hasn’t made anything which is wildly disliked.

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That streak has been broken though by Jab Harry Met Sejal which has just not found an audience for itself. Period. The film didn’t take a mega opening, couldn’t find any traction over the weekend, fell even on a partial holiday [Rakhi] and then had a super crash during rest of the weekdays. One just hasn’t seen this kind of a response for a superstar flick in a really-really long time and what is all the more disappointing is that this has happened when the industry is going through its worst phase at the Box Office.

Box Office - Jab Harry Met Sejal is the biggest commercial disappointment of 2017
Box Office: Jab Harry Met Sejal is the biggest commercial disappointment of 2017

A Shah Rukh Khan film warrants and deserves a lot better; it definitely cannot live to see a day when the first-week collections are a mere 60 crore*. However, that has unfortunately happened and now the lifetime could well be in the vicinity of 70 crores and that’s about it. One just hopes and believes that this is just an aberration and Shah Rukh Khan returns with a Blockbuster next year when he unveils his film with Aanand L. Rai.

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*Estimates. Final numbers awaited

Note: All collections as per production and distribution sources

Joginder Tuteja tweets @tutejajoginder

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34 COMMENTS

  1. His stardom seems to be fading, and this has been the case for the last 3 years. The subjects he selects is not helping either. The last good movie he did was My Name is Khan, and that was over 7 years ago. I don’t think the Aanand L Rai movie is going to be any different, it is going to fail as well. The first thing to understand is that audience are not one cluster. There are different tiers of audience and the interest of each tier is different. He really needs to figure out the tier he wants to cater to and start building his brand accordingly. The other two has.

    Salman has his wagon of cheesy action comedies, and the audience is there for the fights, songs and comedy. No one goes to his movies thinking that they are going to see a work of art or to get enlightened about a societal issue, they are going for entertainment and they will have it. Occasionally we would get gems like Bhajrangi Bhaijaan as well. Basically, the audience knows what to expect and they get that.

    Aamir, on the other hand, is not about cheesy stuff but thought provoking relevant subjects presented in an extremely entertaining fashion – Dhoom 3 was an anomaly – and the audience for his movies are the ones who go for that. These audience are different from that of Salmans.

    Even though Akshay Kumar is not in the league of the Khan-trio, he has also carved an extremely good space for himself, while leaving the action hero image behind for newbies. This consistency in what to expect from his movies have elevated his success at the box office over the last 2 years. He has done it before as well, back when he transitioned from action to comedy.

    This is where Shahrukh is failing. He used to be the quintessential lover boy, and he had success due to that. But, then he got to an age where that falling in love with young women is no longer that cute. And, he has failed at redefining his career since. His movies today are all over the place, and that is not a good way to do it. You cannot cater to all the people, you need to decide who you are targeting, Urban, Rural, age group, social views, all these have to be taken into account. Then start making movies for them. The first couple of movies won’t attain the kinda success they deserve, but going forward, if he continues staying in that tract and bring good subjects to his movies, he will find his footing.

    • People think, if bahubali kind of movies could be made in India why they should waste money on some silly craps in the name of entertainment.

    • Very well written. The writing on the wall was there since last 3 to 4 years. I started hating him after “Rab ne bana di Jodi”, then I thought it is one time mistake. But after watching “Dilwale” in theater I decided enough is enough. I am not going to spend a single rupee on any of his movies. Same goes with Salman Khan. Apart from few really entertaining movies like Wanted, Bajrangi Bhaijan, Dabang series rest all border on crap. His fans though seem to make all his misadventures a success (Kick, Ek tha Tiger, Prem Ratan etc). Anyways times are changing, and audiences have begun to pan such movies. In the long run, I feel it is Shahrukh Khan who will fall first, followed by Salman Khan. Amir Khan however, has been able to reinvent himself in every movie. Barring Dhoom-3 which was pathetic, rest all movies were actually great. Akshay Kumar too does not feel boring or repetitive, and the content he chooses makes a big difference as well. The young brigade is here, and it is high time Senior Khans realise that and divert their energies in making something that is worthy of their stature, and justifies their big name. You dont have to retire just because you grow old. Look at Hollywood, you have to adapt and keep reinventing.

      • Hollywood provides shitty things people like you go wow on it. If Hindi films experiments go left them empty handed at BO how we will progress.

        • Although you make some fair points the audience still chooses star power and masala over content 9/10 times, JHMS just isn’t meant to be good film, if it was it would have been a solid hit so it’s more about the quality of the film ratther than content. In terms of Akshay Kumar ‘not being in the Khan’s league’ did you mean as an actor or PO performer, because as a an actor he’s better than Sallu ‘same films and expression’ Khan and better than Shah ‘kkkkk’ Khan, most would agree Aamir may be better though. Box office wise you could argue he’s had a better few years than SRK too. Actors like Akshay deserve a lot more credit, always trying something different most of his films have content and he doesn’t try to hog a holiday each time for a release (more respect for SRK for doing this lately and even having the guts for a half decent clash with Kaabil). Bollywood is not just about the 3 Khans thus films like Fan, Tubelight and JHMS have been a reality check.

          • I said Akshay is not in the Khan league just in terms of box office, not in terms of anything else.

        • A lot of shitty hindi films that you so happily devour are poor remake of Hollywood movies. Your criticism of Hollywood movies just highlights your “frog in a well” mentality. Watch some good movies, and you shall be enlightened.

      • chandu you such a racist. go and do your own movies. this is what we call entertainment. indian should be proud of bollywood movies that spread around the globe and india became well known. Your hindu mentality and intolerance. sick. now i become racist like you.

    • Please see the collection of his movies from 2011 and then make statements even his bad movies worked on BO . Fan and this one was different so tanked. Not his fan but still I like to research about big stars thts y saying. Think again.

    • Well description of current scenario for king Khan and other two khans ,your blog is an eye opener for him..I am huge fan of Aamir and love the way he mould his career,Salman Continues to entertain us, but tube-light and Jai ho type of movies should be avoided by him in future..Akshay movie are ok types but he is not a mass puller like khans

    • This is very well written and analyzed, however, with due respect to all, I must tell the Indian audience is too much confused, undecided and unpredictable now a days

      that is affecting Hindi film industry in a big way. They still look out for star value rather than content in the name of entertainment (e.g. Almost all Salman movies,

      Happy New Year, Dhoom 3 etc.) but when content needs to be addressed they find out Star name in the movie and turn down them (by avoiding to watch them e.g. Jagga

      Jasoos, Sarbjit, Tamasha etc).

      Every star in our current times have some special ability and they rely on that as well as they are trying to evolve accordingly and that is true for all 3 Khans,

      Akshay Kumar, Hrithik Roshan, Ranbir Kapoor, naming major names right now on Box office valuation.

      Where Salman is used to provide nor brainer entertainer from which he is too trying to shift gear now; Amir is popularly known as content impact and very well

      supporting staff in terms of actual MOVIE MAKING (when I say movie making, Amir makes sure as a whole that movie creates an impact from technical perspective of all

      departments of movie making).

      Now coming to Shah Rukh Khan, who has always tried to bring something new but so subtly or a concept that was not so well baked in terms of movie making and that is

      going wrong with him.Before JHMS and after Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi there was no “out an out” romantic movie where he was starred and basically that proves he is constantly

      trying something new which is completely out of the box or over the top of the Indian audience (e.g. MNIK, RA.One, FAN, Dear Zindagi) But some really good concept

      where the movie making went so wrong due to its half baked or not so well treated content affected him most (e.g. RA.ONE, Don 2, Raees, JHMS). This is the area he

      really needs to look into because his honest attempt generally contains a good content and out of the box thinking. Having saying that I strongly believe SRK should

      strongly avoid movies like Happy New Year, Dilwale, Chennai Express (to some extent), if he doesn’t want to make his cluster of audience getting confused. Entertaining

      movies with Good but out of the box content and handle it with little bit of care, will do the trick for SRK.

      It’s too early to write off one who started his career with failure and became a Superstar, because he knows the taste of failure knows how to recover from that. Let’s

      wait and watch and keep praying for betterment of our industry.

  2. But if he keeps hiding his age to romance with the girls of daughter’s age it still won’t work.
    Come up with socially relevant theme and play his age.

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