His name is synonymous with the most sought-after epithets in the industry, among them ‘most-bankable star’, ‘record-breaking’ actor and filmmaker, and ‘marketing genius’. And it’s easy to see why. Fromm his very first film in a leading role, Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak in 1988, to his most recent release, PK, Aamir Khan has built a formidable fan following and has always delivered super hits, even in the zara hatke genre!
During his three-decade-long career, the actor with the Midas touch has not only set the bar high at the box office, he was also the first to open his innings in the Rs 100-crore club, with films such as Ghajini, followed by 3 Idiots, Dhoom: 3 and his most recent, PK. Known for his penchant for out-of-the-box subjects and yet making them score in cinemas, Khan is credited with being the most bankable star by the film trade.
The actor is celebrating his 50th birthday today, and on this joyous occasion, we walk down memory lane with distributors and exhibitors across territories, and asked them to share moments they cherish relating to Khan’s films. Here are some priceless nuggets:
Eylex (23 Screens)
Aamir Khan’s films have done humongous business at our properties, with 3 Idiots, Dhoom 3 and PK being the highest grossers. Moreover, every film of his that releases breaks records set by his previous films. Advance booking is always huge for Khan’s films and we open advance booking almost a week in advance, from Saturday.
Sanjiv Murarji Vira
SM5 (5 Screens)
Aamir Khan is one of the biggest stars in our industry and all his films have always taken blockbuster openings as well as made blockbuster business. We ran PK for 50 days, which is huge nowadays as everything has come down to the weekend. Khan is a perfectionist, so when he signs a film everyone knows it will be a good film, which is why they see massive collections. The Rs 100-crore trend was started by Khan during Ghajini and now PK has crossed Rs 300 crore.
Gold Cinemas (32Screens)
With every successive year, Aamir Khan’s films get better. While he breaks his own records at the ticket counter, no other star has been able to break his records. Booking for PK opened almost a week in advance and tickets were thus all sold out for the first week. The loyalty of his fans is phenomenal. They worship him, and, amazingly, they range from kids to the elderly.
City Pride (30 Screens)
The longest-running film of Aamir Khan has been Lagaan, which we ran for 16 weeks or three to four months. There was even a demand from the audience to re-run the film. After that, 3 Idiots and then PK saw huge admits as well as box-office collections. The queue for tickets wended its way outside our property and we had a tough time managing the crowd. That doesn’t happen anymore, thanks to online booking. Aamir is a bankable star and no one has ever lost money on a film of his. 3 Idiots was one of the biggest hits we have had and occupancy kept increasing. Due to this, we had to run 20 shows per day. We ran 3 Idiots for 50 days.
Red Rocks (5 Screens)
We drew an unexpectedly large crowd for both PK and Dhoom 3. The Superintendent of Police himself came to watch the first show of PK with his team and he provided police security to manage the crowd outside the cinema hall. In fact, when an Aamir Khan film releases, the traffic outside our cinema goes haywire, and the traffic police has to deploy extra personnel. Our highest ever collections came from Dhoom 3.