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Bollywood's big BO clash: Check out the films that'll fight for Friday eyeballs!

By HT

Budgets, promotions, stakes... everything has been getting bigger and bigger in Bollywood. And box office clashes are no exception. With all eyes on first weekend receipts nowadays, which film hogs the limelight on which Friday is the hottest topic in the trade.
 
This year started with the biggest clash when Shah Rukh Khan’s Raees locked horns with Hrithik Roshan’s Kaabil. Later, Arjun Kapoor’s Half Girlfriend lost the number game to Irrfan’s Hindi Medium. Now the second half of 2017 is also packed with highly anticipated films that’ll fight for the most eyeballs on the same Fridays.
 
Two films about to clash on July 21 are Sabbir Khan’s Munna Michael and Alankrita Shrivastava’s Lipstick under My Burkha. Stating that there’s always scope for a good film to perform well, Sabbir adds that he has watched the trailer of Lipstick Under My Burkha and supports what the film stands for. “As for the clash,” he says, “I hope they both do well, as it has been in the past when two good films were out on the same day.”
 
Sabbir also points out that more choice is good. “I’m an avid moviegoer myself, so if I’ve seen one film on Friday, I’m restless and I’m glad that there’s more to watch. Whatever the audiences choose to watch first, they’ll have a great second choice, too,” he says.
 
Shrivastava feels that both the films have their USPs and their own space. “Munna Michael seems to be a male star-driven mass film, whereas Lipstick Under My Burkha is about the colourful lives of ordinary women. While there’s always space for the status quo, it’s nice to see that disruptors like Lipstick have space, too,” she adds. “I think India is ready for content that ranges from the regular male star-driven film for the masses to a film that speaks of the dreams and desires of ordinary women.”
 
Other film clashes include Mubarakan and Indu Sarkar (July 28); Baadshaho and Shubh Mangal Saavdhan (September 1); Golmaal Again and Secret Superstar (October 18); Tumhari Sullu and 102NotOut (December 1).
 
Talking about his film Haseena Parkar releasing on August 18, with Bareilly Ki Barfi, director Apoorva Lakhia says, “When we release over 1,500 films a year in India, it’s very difficult to get single release dates. The two films releasing on August 18 are lucky to be of totally different genres, so it shouldn’t affect either of us, and there are enough screens to sustain two to three films of medium-to-small budget these days.”
 
From the trade point of view, experts have always maintained that a film’s content decides its fate rather than the threat from another film. Trade analyst Komal Nahata says, “Clashes are detrimental to the interest of both the films, so filmmakers try their best to avoid it, but it’s not always possible.”
 
Summing it up, film critic and Bollywood expert Omar Qureshi states, “There’s always place for a good movie. It can arrive in a clutter, yet stand out if it passes the fine film test. And clashes are nothing new. Ghayal and Dil released together. So did Gaddar and Lagaan. So did a lesser [anticipated] Phool aur Kaante, which released with Lamhe. The Aamir [Khan]-Sunny [Deol] clashes did well because all those movies were fab and had huge audiences. Whereas the much hyped Lamhe, in spite of being a class film, fell by the wayside and newcomer Ajay Devgn scored.”