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WaTcH OuT PeOpLe...HeAvY CoNsTrUcTiOn GoInG On HeRe.


 Dil Toh Pagal Hai

Cast: Shahrukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit, Karishma Kapoor, Akshay Kumar
Director: Yash Chopra
What's it about?: Shah Rukh is a musical theatre director. Madhuri and
Karisma are his actresses. Both of them love him. But he loves one of them.
Strengths: Overall visual feel and some inspired moments.
Weakness: A script that does not live up to its potential.
Trade facts: Dil To Pagal Hai was sold for Rs 2 crores plus print
and publicity per territory. It fetched a whopper initial, the best in years. But the trade as well as the audience reaction was mixed at the outset. The collections didn't "break" and remained
steady at key centres. Result: a success... not in the class of DDLJ. But then such comparisons are odious aren't they?

Cast: Sunil Shetty, Pooja Batra, Sonali Bendre.
Director: Deepak Shivdasani
What's it about?: Big Brother (Sunil Shetty) and Little Brother (Master
Kunal) are simple villagers who migrate to the city. Little bhai witnesses a murder and is killed. So bada bhai avenges his death.
Strengths: Reasonably imaginative direction.
Weaknesses: A run-of-the-mill storyline.
Trade facts: Bhai was the unexpected hit in a week which also saw the release of Dil To Pagal Hai and Ghulam-e-Musthafa. The Rs 1-crore price tag didn't seem too high when the film recovered its cost in the first week itself.

 Deewana Mastana

Big Hit
Cast: Anil Kapoor, Govinda, Juhi Chawla, Johny Lever
Director: David Dhawan
What's it about?:
Anil Kapoor and Govinda try to vie for Ms Chawla's
attention. Inspired by the Hollywood flick -- What About Bob?
Strengths: Several side-splitting scenes.
Weaknesses: The director relies merely on gags to move the story
Trade facts: Sold at Rs 1.2 crores per territory, the film is a big hit abroad, where it has earned over Rs 3 crores... and in Mumbai. In other territories, it has been an average grosser. Trade pundits affirm that it won't be a loser anywhere. However, they do say that the film would have been a bigger hit if it wasn't released simultaneously with Mr and Mrs Khiladi.

 Mr & Mrs Khiladi

Cast: Akshay Kumar, Juhi Chawla, Kader Khan
Director: David Dhawan
What's it about?: Juhi falls for Akshay Kumar who doesn't do any work because his astrologer has told him not to. Problem? Juhi's dad disapproved of the boy's faltu ways.
Strengths: Juhi Chawla.
Weaknesses: Crude comedy.
Trade facts: Surely, these are bad days for Akshay Kumar who faces his first Khiladi flop. Sold for Rs 1.6 crores per territory, the film lost primarily because it was released alongside a stronger Deewana Mastana. It will recover some of its money only in Mumbai.
 Ghulam E-Mustafa

Cast: Nana Patekar, Raveena Tandon
Director: Partho Gosh
What's it about?:Hindu-Muslim bhai bhai.
Strengths: Some emotional scenes between Nana and Raveena.
Weaknesses: The film, publicised as an action-social, was neither
a total actioner nor a socially-trenchant drama. Moreover, when the heroine dies just before the intermission, so does the audience's interest.
Trade facts: For a Nana starrer, Ghulam-e-Musthafa's price of Rs 1.5 crore (plus print and publicity) was quite high. It evoked a satisfactory initial response all over India, but because of its price factor and lukewarm audience reaction, it will lose money.

Interestingly, Nana's Yeshwant (in which he played a Hindu) was released during Id... while Ghulam-e-Musthafa (in which he plays a Muslim) was released during Divali.

Cast: Chandrachur Singh, Arshad Warsi, Anjala Zaveri, Mayoori Kango
Director: Rajesh Singh
What's it about?: Chandrachur falls in love with rich shrew Anjala who is also being wooed by con man Arshad. Mayoori Kango completes this queasy quartet. And believe it or faint, Shakti Kapoor plays the baddie for the nth time.
Strengths: The hot, hot heroes of Tere Mere Sapne.
Weaknesses: No semblance of sense or style anywhere in the film.
Trade facts: Most of the distributors backed out even before the film was released, so Betaabi was a losing proposition from the very outset.

It was sold at Rs 85 lakhs and was even released by Ajay Devgan in the Mumbai sector on a commission basis. In the first week, the film garnered an abysmally low 54 per cent in the theatres. As the ticket sales further plummeted, theatre-wallahs pulled the film out pronto.

Madhuri Dixit, Sanjay Kapoor, Akshaye Khanna
Director: Reema Rakeshnath
What's it about?: Sanjay Kapoor, a rich dude, is fida over la Dix. But can't have her because Madhuri's being serenaded by a Don't break my heart, aka Akshaye Khanna.
Strengths: With Madhuri Dixit and Akshaye Khanna in the cast, what more could you want?
Weaknesses: A better script and director perhaps?
Trade facts: It was sold at a whopping price of Rs 1 crore. Then news filtered that a Calcutta distributor got the hives when he saw the flick and even refused to pay up. It's rumoured that distributors in Mumbai, Delhi and Nizam followed suit. To avoid further panic, Mohabbat was released in a small town in Maharashtra, Malegaon, a few days before the Shraddh. The response to the first three days were heartening. But facts have to be faced. The hype, the publicity gimmicks and the personal promotions by the stars hasn't helped at all.

The good news is that the film will cover its print and publicity costs.

Saif Ali Khan, Kajol
Director: Sanjay Gupta
What's it about?: He loves her. She loves him too. They die. And are
born again. Reincarnation anyone?
Strengths: Slick visuals, a powerhouse performance by Kajol and decent music.
Weaknesses: An inept storyline and ho hum direction.
Trade facts: Despite the positive pre-release buzz it will probably go down as one of the top ten disasters of the year. Made at over Rs 5 crores, yet again the Calcutta distributor played truant, causing alarm among other tradewallahs as well.

Hameshaa lost about Rs 1.5 crores even before it was released. No happy ending here.

and the list goes on...

Mithun Chakraborty (yup, he's still around) was back with Jodidaar, that didn't flop because it was sold at a measly Rs 18-20 lakhs.

Judge Mujrim a long delayed project featuring Sunil Shetty and Ashwini Bhave sold at Rs 30 lakhs on another okay-dokey proposition.

Jab Dil Kisi Pe Aata Hai (dubbed), publicised as the biggest hit of Telugu cinema, came unstuck. Tabu's current popularity didn't help matters.

Rekha's jaadu didn't work with Udaan.

And if anyone is interested in knowing, the Jeetendra-Vivek Mushran Dharma Karma found no takers.

 Pardes Hit... Big hit
Shah Rukh Khan, Mahima, Apoorva Agnihotri
Director: Subhash Ghai
What's it about?: A 'typical' Indian girl falls in love with an NRI. But the NRI is not the right guy, because he's not a 'typical' Indian. Finally, she finds true love... with a 'typical' Indian.
Strengths: The music and some likeable performances by the lead players.
Weakness: It's a mix of Dilwale Dulhania Le Jaayenge and Manoj Kumar's Purab Aur Paschim. The portrayal of East and West bristled with cliches.
Trade facts: After Trimurti, Subhash Ghai kept his promise to compensate his distributors by selling his next film at the comparatively moderate price of Rs 1.8 crores per territory.

The film has earned its best collections in Mumbai. It has done reasonably well in Punjab, Delhi-UP and the South. While it is average in West Bengal. It was a no-no in Central India.


Cast: Sanjay Dutt, Urmila Matondkar
Director: Ramgopal Varma
Strengths: No comments.
Weaknesses: Someone forgot to add a plot, among other things. A weirdo called Chacko and a weak joke that went on for an entire reel.
Trade facts: High expectations after Rangeela fetched the film a Rs 2 crores price per territory. It recovered almost half the cost with a whopping initial. But that's about it. The film then stopped dead in its track in all centres.

 Aur Pyar Ho Gaya

Bobby Deol, Aishwarya Rai
Director: Rahul Rawail
What's it about?: Give us time to figure this one out. But they did try to cog the Hollywood flick, Only You.
Strengths: Some films have 'em. Some don't. This doesn't.
Weakness: It's hard to think that with Bobby, Ash and Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan something could go wrong. But it does. Blame it on the script... maybe because it was non-existent.
Trade facts: Sold Rs 2 crores per territory, the film crashed in all centres. And that means ALL centres.

 Mere Sapno Ki Rani
Sanjay Kapoor, Urmila Matondkar, Madhoo
What's it about?:
Once upon a time there were two sisters. One of them is engaged to this guy, another one's in love with him. Finally, sacrifice is the true hero... uh... heroine.
Strengths: Oh no, not again.
Weakness: A remake of the Telugu hit Pellisandadi, which was a twisted version of Hum Aapke Hain Koun..!, one wonders if any imagination was at work here at all.
Trade facts: Sold at a Rs 80 lakhs per territory, the film's miserable collections might not even cover the costs of Urmila's costumes.


Sunil Shetty, Shilpa Shetty
Story: A fashion photographer marries a model. The model disappears. And the photographer shoots, this time with a gun.
Strengths: Decent production values.
Weakness: An uninspiring story. And to think it was cadged from Roman Polanski's Frantic.
Trade facts: Sold at about 1 crore per territory, the film started badly despite slick publicity and simply couldn't pick up.

And the list goes on...
Surprise, surprise, Mithun Chakraborty's Daadagiri recovered its Rs 35 lakh cost without a problem. But Ek Phool Teen Kaante couldn't do even that, though it was loosely inspired by the Hollywood mega-hit, Baby's Day Out.

The horror flick, Pretatma was more hoo than boo. And Sajna Dole Le Ke Aana was this month's dubbed dud.

Super hit
: Bobby Deol, Manisha Koirala, Kajol
Director: Rajiv Rai
What's it about?:
Governor gets killed. His stepson, a disco dude, is accused of the foul deed. Dude breaks out of prison to find the real killer. Dude sings songs, worries and hides in plush boudoirs. And the real killer is...
Strengths: A tight suspense thriller featuring two top heroines as its fatal attraction.
Weakness: The story is quite unbelievable... but hey, that's commercial cinema.
Trade facts: Sold at Rs 2.25 crores per territory, it recovered the cost pronto. Though the collections dipped by the fourth week, the film will go on to grab over Rs 4.5 crores in Mumbai and Rs 4 crores in other territories.


Neither here, nor there
Madhuri Dixit, Shabana Azmi, Ayub Khan
Director: Prakash Jha
What's it about?: Woman empowerment, taking the law in their own hands, personal vendetta.
Strengths: A very-much-in-form Madhuri Dixit
Weakness: An attempt to be both offbeat and commercial.
Trade facts: The film was received poorly in the North. (It's even said that women weren't allowed to see the movie by their husbands). But because of its low cost, and because it did fairly well in Central India and Maharashtra, the film hasn't been declared a calamitous loser.


Shah Rukh Khan, Juhi Chawla, Aditya Pancholi
Director: Aziz Mirza
What's it about?: An ambitious good guy is a chamcha to a not-so-good boss. Along comes an ambitious good girl. Now it's heads or tails between money and love.
Strengths: Shah Rukh Khan, Juhi Chawla and a couple of the catchy songs.
Weakness: The rest of the movie.
Trade facts: It was sold for a little over Rs 1 crore in each territory and will earn more than double its cost. The film has fared badly in Rajasthan and Punjab, well in Bengal and Delhi-UP, very well in Mumbai and South India, and extremely well abroad.


Govinda, Rupali Ganguli, Madhuwanti
Director: Kirti Kumar
What's it about?: A street-smartie takes revenge on his foster uncle.
Strengths: Only Govinda.
Weakness: The film seems to be bandaged together. Also the new (uninspiring) heroines don't help much.
Trade facts: It took five years to make. As a result, the producers released it as soon as they could, without any publicity. It opened well, but couldn't sustain its tempo. However, since it was sold cheaply it will cover its cost.


Cast: Inder Kumar, Ayesha Jhulka
Director: Chinni Prakash
What's it about?: A group of guys give shelter to a woman who's fleeing from her past.
Strengths: Snappy music... occasionally.
Weakness: A toothpick-thin story, and oodles of overacting.
Trade facts: A highly-publicised pic that was sold at over Rs 50 lakhs per territory, it had nothing special to offer at the b-o... and couldn't rekindle the interest shown by the public in Masoom.


Jeetendra, Jaya Prada
Director: V.Madhusudan Rao
What's it about?: Ram, Sita, Lakshman, Hanuman, Luv, Kush...
Strengths: Lavish sets, special effects and exotic costumes.
Weakness: A cast that looks extremely tired and indifferent (Dara Singh is still Hanuman).
Trade facts: The producer wasn't willing to sell this Rs 5 crore extravaganza for the initial offer of Rs 60 lakhs per territory. But when it was time to release, this mythological, no one was willing to take up the film at any cost. So the producer, who distributed most of the territories himself, will have to bear the brunt of the disaster himself.


The most monstrous snake in the world
Director: Luis Llosa
Trade facts: It was sold at about Rs 50 lakhs (in Mumbai), an unusually high-price for a dubbed Hollywood film. But the theatres are full with crowds wanting a sss...scare.


Akshay Kumar faced his third (recent) flop with Daava. And then fourth with Tarazu. Mithun Chakraborty faced his umpteenth flop with Jeevan Yudh. Police Station was locked up in the cans, a week after its release. The three south dubbed imports, Khel Khiladi Ka, Khiladi No.1 and Agni I.P.S. were hurriedly exported out of the theatres.

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