Rewind - Twenty Years Of Gadar
Tuesday 15 June 2021 14.30 IST
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Gadar - Ek Prem Katha is twenty years old today and still after twenty years of release it remains the last true blue mega blockbuster of the Hindi film industry. Yes there was Bahubali - The Conclusion which came in 2017 and is of similar stature but that film was from the Telugu film industry and not the Hindi film industry.



It actually looks the Hindi film industry may never give another blockbuster of the magnitude of Gadar but that is what it looks like at present due to the type of cinema being churned out but things can change in the future so there is always hope. No doubt there have been some huge blockbusters since Gadar like Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Dangal but despite being very good films they dont have that epic feeling of a Gadar or Bahubali to take them to to an even larger audience.



Gadar released on 15th June 2001 and it was a blockbuster on day one with packed housed across the country which remained through the first week. The second week collections came in even better as more prints were added in week two despite having a high print count in week one itself. In the first few weeks of release India had never seen such large crowds at theatres before. In 1994 Hum Aapke Hain Koun had become an insane blockbuster but that was in a different way as it unfolded slowly and over time.



Gadar Ek Prem katha eventually went on to do business of 77 crore nett and a share of 55 crore and this was at a time when a 25 crore nett number was good. The film did face negativity and even in the industry these NFDC type actors like Naseeruddin Shah and Shabana Azmi were said to have made derogratory comments in the press about the film but these people would hardly know much about peoples cinema considering the cinema they had tried to drive or maybe it could have been some other agenda.



It was said to be anti Muslim but the biggest out performance of the film came in UP and Gujarat and in centres where there was a high percentage of Muslims. It performed even better than Punjab and Haryana in these places especially the Muslim centres of UP.



The film clashed with another film Lagaan which also scored well and was extraordinary in Mumbai and South but could not do that well in the Hindi states. It was said this was because of Gadar but that was not the case as at that time there was not a screen issue as both films got their respective screens on release and it was about how they would go on. Lagaan had a problem with its story as India had a huge struggle with British for years but here the makers were trying to tell audiences that the British would settle issues over a cricket match. This was okay for Mumbai and South but not for North, Central and East India where you need much stronger content in terms of the story.



The director of  Gadar Ek Prem Katha had given major HITS before like Hukumat, Elaan E Jung and Tahelka but they were all in that the normal commercial action format but in Gadar he surpassed himself by some distance by deleviring a film with the action format but with such high poowered emotions.that it was unstoppable at the box office.



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