By Taran Adarsh, Bollywood Hungama News Network
A prominent distributor called to say that the business of the two new releases -- MISSION ISTAANBUL and MONEY HAI TOH HONEY HAI -- had hit rock-bottom due to bomb blasts and the scare + heavy rains lashing various parts of the country, including Mumbai [it has been pouring incessantly since last few days].
There's no denying that film business takes a severe beating when natural and unnatural calamities strike. Entertainment is never the first priority under those circumstances. Actually, it's the last thing on your mind. But MISSION ISTAANBUL and MONEY HAI TOH HONEY HAI would've lost the battle even otherwise.
Let's talk of MISSION ISTAANBUL first! The general feeling within the industry is that action films fetch a better start than love stories and family dramas. There're innumerable examples to substantiate this point. Agreed! But not all action films fetch a deafening start. Likewise, not all love stories hit the bull's eye like JAANE TU… YA JAANE NA. The openings differ from product to product.
MISSION ISTAANBUL had great promos that sent out right signals to the viewers. But the paying public were just not interested, at least that's what came across when the film opened. The opening shows across the nation -- mind you, this was a couple of hours before the blasts in Bangalore occurred -- were extremely poor. How does one explain the non-happening start?
It's very difficult to analyze how the common man thinks. There's no formula for success. Perhaps, people aren't interested in watching terrorists on screen since all newspapers and news channels are full of them, daily. Perhaps, Vivek and Zayed don't have the charisma to draw audiences in hordes. Perhaps, the viewers are waiting for the real big films to arrive. Perhaps, MISSION ISTAANBUL didn't feature in the viewer's 'must watch' list.
After a slow start, the business of MISSION ISTAANBUL marginally escalated on Saturday and Sunday, although, at many places, the evening and night shows had disastrous attendance. As for weekdays, let's not even discuss!
MONEY HAI TOH HONEY HAI is a terrible waste of a terrific opportunity. Making a film with multiple stars in today's times and completing it in lightening speed is a big achievement. Besides, Eros gave the film a respectable release -- promoting the film to the optimum and getting the right shows at plexes. But producer proposes, audience disposes! Its opening too sent shock waves across the film fraternity.
I am surprised, how could the makers pass off such sub-standard stuff to the audiences? In most cases, what's penned on paper and what eventually gets translated on celluloid are two different things. I presume, this must've been the case with MONEY HAI TOH HONEY HAI as well.
MONEY HAI TOH HONEY HAI was greeted with semi-empty halls and the business remained rock-bottom as days progressed. The word of mouth has been outright negative, so have been the reviews. This film joins the ranks of forgettable films of 2008.