Tubelight has finally crossed Rs 100 crore at the box office, but for a Salman Khan movie, the fact that it actually took five days to do so, is surprising enough. But even with the Rs 100 crore in its kitty, Salman Khan’s Eid offering isn’t exactly a hit that is going to appease everyone financially. While the producers may be quite in a safe place as they might have recovered the costs, we cannot say the same about the distributors and the exhibitors, who had brought the movie at an astronomical price. Well, can’t blame them for doing so since it is a Salman Khan movie, directed by Kabir Khan, and they had given us two magical blockbusters in Ek Tha Tiger and Bajrangi Bhaijaan earlier. But then the third time is not always the charm.
To be honest with you, I always had this niggling doubt that Tubelight might underperform at the box office even before the first trailer came out, thanks to certain red flags. It had nothing to do with the fact that it was a remake of a really average Hollywood movie, Little Boy, and that there were reports of creative clashes between Salman and Kabir on the sets. The red flags I had in my mind was about certain casting decisions and the setting. Unfortunately, they were proven true when Tubelight came out last week and looks like it won’t topple the records of either Ek Tha Tiger or Bajrangi Bhaijaan.
These are the five red flags I had in mind, based on the past trend of certain actors involved in the project.
Salman Khan and Sohail Khan have acted in a few movies together – Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya?, Salaam-e-Ishq: A Tribute to Love, God Tussi Great Ho, Hello, Heroes, Main Aurr Mrs Khanna, Veer – out of which only the first movie was a hit. For some reason, Bhai fans are not buying the bonding between the real-life siblings on reel, with Tubelight being the latest victim of the trend. Sadly, Tubelight was Sohail Khan’s first onscreen appearance since 2010, and he gave a really credible performance in it.
Salman playing a mentally challenged bloke
If you ask Salman fans as to in which movie has Salman lost his sanity, they would instantly say Tere Naam. However, Salman was almost normal for around 70 per cent of the movie, playing Radhe and fake-kidnapping the heroine before making her fall for him. It’s towards the last reels that he goes into a brain coma, leading to a tragic conclusion. But if you ask in which movie has Salman gone full bonkers, there is only one answer and that’s Kyun Ki. Directed by Priyadarshan, Salman plays a mental patient under the care of a doctor played by Kareena Kapoor Khan. The movie was a huge flop at the box office, easily taken down by Akshay Kumar’s comedy, Garam Masala (intriguingly, also directed by Priyadarshan). Now with how Tubelight has been received, it would be better if Salman plays roles where he is sane in the head.
Pairing with a foreign actress
Before Tubelight, Salman Khan was paired with a foreign actress in only one movie and that was in Marigold, where he romanced Ali Larter. The movie was one of the biggest debacles of Salman Khan’s career. Though he isn’t romancing Zhu Zhu in Tubelight, the pre-release buzz was made out to be the exact opposite. For some reason, Salman fans want him to only woo desi heroines. Perhaps they believe in Make In India too much!
Salman and period dramas
Before Tubelight, Saman’s rare trysts with period dramas were mostly restricted to Sooryavanshi (the flashback scenes) and Veer, and both were duds. So an advice for Salman – please do not time travel next time! Leave that for The Flash!
Shah Rukh Khan’s cameo
As much as I love Shah Rukh Khan - the actor, I do feel that having him in small doses in a movie is kind of a jinx. Most of the movies where he had a cameo have not worked at the box office, be it Luck By Chance (his best cameo), Love Breakups Zindagi, Gaja Gamini, Kuch Meetha Ho Jaye etc, with the rare exceptions being Har Dil Jo Pyaar Karega and Saathiya. It’s always better to have Salman Khan play a cameo in your movie than SRK, as the former has a slightly better record. Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, anyone?
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