The meaning of success varies from person to person. Some people will equate success to materialistic value whereas, others will consider personal satisfaction above all else. For a Bollywood film to be considered successful though, it has to perform strongly at the box office. These days a combination of larger than life superstars and some savvy marketing techniques can make any film successful, regardless of the script and the performances of the actors. However, in the past there have been films that supported a star studded cast, an exceptional script and great reviews from the critics, yet for some reason, they failed to make an impact at the box office. So let’s take a look at some of the Bollywood films which surprisingly failed at the box office.
- Andaz Apna Apna
Didn’t expect this one did you? Many people will find it hard to believe but when it was first released in the year 1994 the movie failed to perform at the box office. Remember this was the year in which more popular movies like Hum Aapke Hain Kaun were released. What made the failure of Andaz Apna Apna more shocking was the fact that it had two of the biggest names in Indian movie industry as its lead actors; Aamir Khan and Salman Khan. Needless to say that modern day audiences would flock to their nearest theatres to see these two actors together on screen again. Perhaps that explains why the movie ended up achieving its cult status.
- Bombay Velvet
Anurag Kashyap has always had a reputation for being a maverick. A director who has been known for his hard hitting indie flicks stepped into the world of mainstream cinema with Bombay Velvet and what an entry it was. The movie had everything going for it, with Ranbir Kapoor and Anushka Sharma in lead roles and renowned director Karan Johar making his acting debut. Trade analysts had high hopes with the movie but all the expectations were shattered when the movie was finally released in May of 2015. Critics and audiences alike were disappointed with the over-indulgent mess of a movie. Fans of Kashyap’s earlier movies were disappointed to see that the movie lacked the edge that made the directors earlier films such cult classics. Bombay velvet will always be remembered as a movie that failed to capitalize on its potential.
What is really baffling is the fact that in spite of being one of Shahrukh Khan’s best performances, Swades was not the kind of success that it should have been. Perhaps the audiences weren’t ready for a movie where escapism and glamour took a backseat to social issues ranging from child marriage to caste system. What the movie lacked in songs and dance, it compensated in brilliant performances by the entire cast. Needless to say that the film was a critical darling and went on to win all the major awards in that year.
- Rocket Singh: Salesman of the year
2009 was a great year for Ranbir Kapoor. The actor was on a roll with two back to back hits and was all set to replicate the success with Rocket Singh. However fate had other plans and the movie underperformed at the box office. The movie was certainly not a mainstream Bollywood movie but it was being produced by Yash Raj studios and was directed by Shimit Amin ( of “Chak de India!” fame). Once again the blame probably lies with the fact that apart from Ranbir Kapoor the film lacked any big name stars and was devoid of typical Bollywood clichés like item songs and glamorous heroines. Needless to say the movie has its fair share of admirers who enjoy it even after all these years.
Subhash Gai is fondly known as the showman because of his larger than life characters, elaborate music set pieces and exotic locales. However all three of these were not enough to save the disaster known as Yuvraaj. Without going into elaborate details, the movie is an assault on the senses with actors Salman Khan and Zayed Khan hamming it up. The characters are unlikeable and the plot is extremely boring. The only saving grace is AR Rahman’s music which is magical as always.
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