An open letter to the very commercially savvy Kareena Kapoor Khan who says her husband’s Rangoon is ‘beyond box-office collections’.
Having known you for decades now, and knowing how well you understand the economics of filmmaking I am surprised at your justifying the crippling failure of your husband’s starrer Rangoon by saying such films are “beyond box-office collections”.
No film is beyond box-office collections. You know it. In many of our past conversations, you have stressed as to why you consider commercial success far more important than critical acclaim. You have told me very bluntly you would rather do a Bajrangi Bhaijaan than a Chameli.
And yet here you are, blinded by spousal love and protectiveness, defending the film’s failure by exempting Rangoon from the exigencies of the box-office. You should look at the losses that the production house Viacom 18 are going to suffer because of Vishal Bhardwaj’s self-indulgent filmmaking.
The producers are looking at losses of up to Rs 60 crores. That’s a staggering amount of money to lose for any corporate company.
Who is going to take the blame? Not Saif for sure. He did his work, promoted the film to the best of his abilities and has now moved on. The enormous tragedy of Bollywood filmmaking is that a handful of stars monopolize the marquee. They take all the credit for the success of a film. But when a film fails they quietly walk away, putting all the blame on the director.
Vishal Bhardwaj must rightly accept the blame for the colossal failure of Rangoon. Kareena, you say, “Vishal Bhardwaj’s films are art, it is like a painting. You either like his films or you don’t. It is not like a typical commercial film that is going to cater to everybody’s taste and sensibilities, he caters to a certain section of audience and that is why some critics have revered it and called it a piece of art.”
If Vishal’s films are like a painting then hang them on your wall. Please don’t inflict them on audiences. What you are trying to say is, Rangoon is a niche film catering to a selected section of the audience. If so, you don’t spend 80 crores indulging such niche harkatein. You make niche films at a reasonable budget where the break-even point is reached without straining for numbers.
Very simply put, you don’t make Rangoon at the budget of Bajrangi Bhaijaan.
It’s simple economics. I am surprised the producers fell for Rangoon. Look at it, and you know why we have reached a crisis point in the Hindi film industry.