Post ‘josh’ disaster! Can Shah Rukh Resurrect His Lost Glory???
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It’s on record now. One month after the release of
‘Josh’, the movie trade has finally delivered its verdict on the film
that it’s nothing short of a disaster. All along, certain sections of the
media, stars of the film and obviously, the makers too, had been tom-tomming
about the film’s stupendous success. Special ads had been put in newspapers
proclaiming how the movie had fetched 100% collections all over the country.
Exclusive promos were made for television channels that depicted the film’s
unprecedented triumph at the box-office.
But, all those efforts seem to have gone waste now. Despite the intimidating pre and post-release publicity, the film has been declared a momentous disappointment. ‘Film Information’, a reputed film trade weekly, has categorised ‘Josh’ as just a ‘Coverage To Commission’ film in its half-yearly box-office analysis report. According to the magazine, ‘Josh’ seems to be placed just marginally above ‘Mela’ and ‘Dulhan Hum Le Jayenge’, both which have been absolute washouts. In fact, what’s surprising in the classification is that the Bobby Deol-starrer ‘Badal’ has figured much above ‘Josh’, in terms of the success factor. Not just that, even the Preity Zinta-starrer ‘Kya Kehna’ has left ‘Josh’ leagues behind.
It is rather sad to note the unsympathetic treatment the audience seems to have meted to ‘Josh’, considering the film had some credible performances by Aishwarya Rai, Chandrachur Singh and Sharad Kapoor. Of course, the film’s catastrophic fate will have an adverse impact on everybody connected with it, but industry sources believe that the most affected will obviously be Shah Rukh Khan. This is his fourth consecutive disappointment after ‘Badshah’, ‘Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani’ and ‘Hey Ram’. And that’s enough reason for the actor to ring the agony alarms.
Shah Rukh’s resolute supporters insist all his movies have garnered a phenomenal opening, which is an indication of his popularity and star power. But the point is, do filmmakers invest crores in the man only so that he can enable you guaranteed business for three days? What after that? Surely the actor needs to take more responsibility upon himself when it comes to the box-office status of a film. Producers don’t sign Shah Rukh expecting a ‘Coverage To Commission’ film. When they pay him the big bucks, they expect bigger bucks in return that’s the clear logic. And Shah Rukh himself cannot escape this because he has always proclaimed that he’s the best. So, how does one react when one finds the ‘best’ lagging behind the ‘rest’ like Bobby Deol and Preity Zinta? Besides, with four consecutive failures, how long will producers trust Shah Rukh of garnering even a good opening?
Though one must admit that Shah Rukh, on his own, did all that he could to rescue the film. One hears that in Delhi and other places in North India, he personally visited a lot of theatres where ‘Josh’ was being screened, thereby adding to the excitement of the audience. But, this doesn’t seem to have helped at all. The general reaction is that people expect a lot more from Shah Rukh now, than just this. If he believes he’s a superstar, he’s got to deliver like a superstar. Which is why, with every new release of the star, the expectations are sky-high. And if Shah Rukh does not match up to them even marginally, the audience rejects the film. This happened with ‘Badshah’, ‘PBDHH’, ‘Hey Ram’ and now, ‘Josh’.
For someone who’s used to having blockbusters to his credit, it will be tough for Shah Rukh to come to terms with his failure. However aggressive Venus may be in their promotion of pronouncing ‘Josh’ a hit, deep inside, they all know what the truth is. And now, this official box-office assessment by ‘Film Information’ has brought the failure to the fore.
These continual fiascos seem to be affecting Shah Rukh personally as well. People close to the actor insist that he’s mellowed down significantly. He isn’t overtly self-assertive as he used to be, nor does he react rampantly on an impulse anymore. In this intriguing phase, he has even found a new lot of friends, which include the mighty Bachchans. ‘Josh’ was one film Shah Rukh looked forward to impetuously, because it was his first release post the Hrithik-hysteria. It was vital for the film to precipitate an impact because Shah Rukh’s supremacy was at stake. And therefore, he did everything that was within his limits to give ‘Josh’ the required boost. But nothing helped.
What’s worse is the bit of news that followed the crash of ‘Josh’. The fact that Shah Rukh is out of Hrithik’s next release ‘Fiza’, in which he was supposed to do a special number with Sushmita Sen. Director Khalid Mohammed justified the turnabout saying Shah Rukh wasn’t needed because they had changed the original concept of the song. But, the story that’s doing the rounds is, that it was Hrithik who put his foot down and insisted on not having a Shah Rukh item-song in his film. Which is why the director had to ask Shah Rukh to opt out, at least that’s what the rumour goes. Not just that, it’s speculated that Hrithik has sent messages to Farah Khan (as reported in the newsweekly ‘Outlook’), voicing his decision of not working in her film if Shah Rukh happens to be his co-star.
Now such an instance, even if it’s untrue, would be unthinkable six months back, when Shah Rukh was the undisputed supremo. But today, one does give it a second thought. This circumstance brings to light the changing parameters in Shah Rukh’s career. What he needs now is another ‘DDLJ’ or ‘KKHH’. Nothing less can help him resurrect his lost glory. And Shah Rukh better deliver this monumental blockbuster real fast. Because, with the smashing arrival of Hrithik, Abhishek and Fardeen, things are only going to get more difficult.
- star dust
© Destination Shahrukh