‘Love wins’: Bollywood rejoices as ‘Pathaan’ beats boycott calls to set records

‘Love wins’: Bollywood rejoices as ‘Pathaan’ beats boycott calls to set records

Pathaan’s roaring success in the face of hate messages and “boycott Pathaan” and “boycott Bollywood” calls has prompted noted Hindi film personalities to come out and celebrate, saying that at the end of the day, “love wins.”

Shah Rukh Khan’s comeback film raised a whopping Rs 57 crore on its opening day. The early response to the stylish spy thriller, also featuring Deepika Padukone and John Abraham, appears to be a shot in the arm for Bollywood that is reeling under pandemic-induced losses and a series of box-office failures in 2022, besides calls for boycott on social media.

Filmmaker Karan Johar, frequent collaborator and close friend of SRK, praised Team Pathaan for crossing the Rs 100-crore mark in reported global earnings.

Also read: ‘Pathaan’ review: Bollywood roars back with SRK’s seat-edge spy thriller

“Hits beyond a century!!! Rs 100 crore and above in one day! GOAT mega star SRK, visionary and legendary YRF and Adi… Sid, Deepika, John!!! Wow. Love forever trumps hate! Mark this date…” Johar wrote on his Instagram Stories on Thursday.

“Highest grossing first day”

According to production house Yash Raj Films (YRF), the movie’s nett Day 1 collection stood at Rs 55 crore, the “highest grossing first day for a Hindi film.” Its dubbed versions in Tamil and Telugu fetched an additional Rs 2 crore from theatres across the country.

“Love in action! #Pathaan. Thank you @iamsrk for far more than the movies,” tweeted actor-producer Pooja Bhatt.

Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub, who has worked with Shah Rukh in Raees and Zero, said he watched a late-night show of Pathaan, which had over 95 per cent occupancy. “Love wins and you are love @iamsrk sir @deepikapadukone superb. #JohnAbraham terrifying. Kudos to the whole team. @yrf #SiddharthAnand Thanks!” he added in his tweet.

Extra shows to meet demand

The Siddharth Anand directorial, which faced boycott calls over the song Besharam Rang for allegedly hurting religious sentiments, sold 4.19 lakh tickets till Tuesday in advance booking, reflecting 80% occupancy on Day 1, even for early morning shows beginning at 6 am or 7 am, said industry insiders.

Watch: Pathaan release: VHP puts protests on hold

Following glowing reviews and audience reaction, YRF on Wednesday said the studio had added a post-midnight 12.30 am show across India. Besides, 300 more screens were added due to “unprecedented” demand, according to trade analyst Taran Adarsh, taking the total screen count of Pathaan to 8,500 worldwide.

For actor Ayushmann Khurrana, an ardent SRK fan, the scintillating reception of the film felt like “a personal victory.”

“Met him. Hugged him. Danced with him. This feels like a personal victory. #Pathaan,” Khurrana Tweeted.

Terming Pathaan a “must watch,” actor Dia Mirza tweeted: “Love wins. Congratulations Team Pathaan!!! Had such an amazing time.”

“Return of good days”

Filmmaker Satish Kaushik said Shah Rukh’s Pathaan and Salman Khan’s Kisi Ka Bhai Kisi Ki Jaan signal the return of the good old days for Bollywood.

“Jan 25 2023 is Celebration Day for beloved mumbai film industry .. good days are here again ..blockbuster Pathaan will cross 50cr today & teaser of Kisi Ka Bhai Kisi Ki Jaan shows another blockbuster on its way. Cheers @iamsrk @BeingSalmanKhan its party time for bollywood (sic),” Kaushik tweeted.

Also read: ‘Pathaan’ release: 4 held in Indore for ‘anti-Prophet’ slogans; 9 detained in Faridabad

Actor Kangana Ranaut also had some good things to say about Pathaan.

Pathaan is doing well. Such films should definitely work. Hindi cinema that is lagging behind… every person is trying their best…,” Ranaut told reporters on Wednesday night on the sidelines of her film Emergency’s wrap party.

Veteran actor and her Emergency co-star Anupam Kher described it as a “huge film” mounted on a massive budget.

Wishes from Pakistan

Pathaan, a high-octane entertainer steeped in patriotic spirit, follows the titular spy (essayed by Shah Rukh in his first full-fledged role in over four years) who comes back to work to thwart a deadly attack on Indian soil planned by a mercenary group Outfit X, led by Jim (John). Also starring Salman in a guest appearance, the film released a day before Republic Day.

“The best gift that #Pathaan could give our nation on #RepublicDay2023 is bringing back the audience to the cinemas in #Srinagar. This is just beautiful,” tweeted director Onir as he shared a picture of a packed theatre.

Wishes also poured in from Pakistan with Shah Rukh’s Raees co-star Mahira Khan celebrating the release of their 2017 film and Pathaan, which hit the screens on the same date five years apart. “Five years ago… My Pathan,” Mahira captioned a still from Raees featuring her with the Bollywood star.

Also read: ‘Pathaan’ smashes box office record on a non-holiday; rakes in over ₹50 Cr on Day 1

“One word for #Pathaan !! Paisa vasool!! Congratulations @iamsrk @TheJohnAbraham @deepikapadukone @yrf #SiddharthAnand and ofcourse tiger forever @BeingSalmanKhan (sic),” said actor Aahana Kumra on Twitter.

According to YRF, Pathaan set multiple new records, including the “widest Hindi release of all time in India” and “highest grossing first day for a non-holiday release,” the studio said in a press release.

The first day gross collection of the movie is also the “highest ever” in Shah Rukh’s career as well as for John and Deepika, director Anand, and YRF, the banner further said.

Industry insiders expect Pathaan to maintain momentum in its five-day release weekend.

(With agency inputs)

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