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Our Favour8s!

First off, a huge and heartfelt ‘Thank You!’ from the entire team for your very gracious and generous response to our 8th Anniversary issue that was published last week. In that edition, we had many from the fraternity sharing their lists of 8 changes that they have witnessed in their particular domain of the filmmaking process or commerce. This week, it’s our turn to return the favour by enlisting our favourite 8 issues in the exciting ongoing journey that is Box Office India. Of course, each of the 400+ editions so far has been a unique and fun ride but since the operative number is 8, we will abide by that cap. Here goes, in order of date of publication:

Issue #1, September 19, 2009: The one that started it all! Elegantly designed, larger than the standard A-4 size, printed on glossy paper and with all pages in colour – finally the industry had a trade publication whose production values did justice to the high-profile and glamorous industry it reported on, and catered to. And with a column by Shah Rukh Khan, a diverse mix of features and an easy-to-grasp tabulation of All-India collections, it certainly wasn’t a case of all style and no substance!

Issue #105, September 17, 2011: Our second Anniversary issue hosted columns from the who’s who of the industry. But what especially stood out was the print innovation featured on its front and back covers – an advertisement for the film Ra.One in lenticular 3D. In layman terms, lenticular 3D makes it possible for the reader to see a very apparent depth in the visual without needing to wear any special 3D glasses, i.e. through the naked eye. This was a first for any Indian publication, not just for a film trade journal.

Issue #109, October 15, 2011: The first issue to feature a Guest Editor – Ranbir Kapoor. Subsequently, we have had the immense pleasure of hosting (in alphabetical order) AR Rahman, Ajay Devgn, Akshay Kumar, Deepika Padukone, Ekta Kapoor, Hrithik Roshan, Kangana Ranaut, Karan Johar, Pritam Chakraborty, Priyanka Chopra, Rakesh Roshan, Rohit Shetty, Saif Ali Khan, Sajid Nadiadwala, Siddharth Roy Kapur, Vidya Balan and Vishal Bhardwaj as Guest Editors, and in time to come, we hope to add to this super-exclusive list.

Issue #111, October 29, 2011: The cover story of our Diwali issue attracted the attention of the national media besides the trade. We pegged collections of major films from 1960 to 2010 with what they would be worth had they invested their entire proceeds to purchase gold. At the head of the list, quite appropriately was that magnum opus, Mughal-E-Azam, which weighed in at around `1,235 crore. Mind you, with gold having appreciated a further 20 per cent since then, that number would be around `1,500 crore now. Wow!

Issue #136, April 21, 2012: This was the start of our on-going partnership with the US-based BoxOffice magazine, who provide us with North America charts and news each week. What made the association so heartening for us was the fact that the oldest film trade publication in the world (publishing continuously since 1920) and the first-ever to report box office numbers (in 1937), actively sought out a magazine halfway across the world and one that hadn’t even completed 3 years of operations then. Now that is what you call a vote of confidence!

Issue #157, September 15, 2012: Our 3rd Anniversary issue made publishing history with its spectacular print innovation. Incorporated in the magazine was a fully functional 7-inch LCD screen, playing out HD quality videos with volume and chapter controls. It was a first for any publication across Asia and we still get queries asking if there are any spare copies left…there are none!

Issue #210, September 21, 2013: For both Editor Vajir Singh and yours truly, our 4th Anniversary issue remains the all-time favourite, content wise. While featuring an interview with living legend Amitabh Bachchan is always an honour, to have that interaction conducted by three of our most successful and diverse directors – Rohit Shetty, Imtiaz Ali and Shoojit Sircar – well, that’s an experience virtually impossible to top! This was one interview where the team really had nothing to do but sit back and marvel at Mr Bachchan speaking at length and with candour on a variety of subjects, perhaps because it was colleagues and not media persons who were asking the questions. The same edition had our team visiting the offices of the leading production houses in the country to see first-hand how each one operated. From corporate studios of international parentage to traditional ‘solo’ producers to director-led or actor-led banners to emerging new kids on the block – as many as 16 production houses featured in what was indeed a most memorable and educative experience for both us and our readers.

Issue #419, September 23, 2017: Because we are still basking in the warmth of your appreciation for our 8th Anniversary issue! Every Sunday break foregone and sleepless night spent in the office in the run up to the issue was much more than made up for by your congratulatory tweets, Facebook posts, texts, WhatsApps and phone calls. Your encouragement is truly what keeps us going and we hope to always remain worthy of it. That’s enough self-indulgence to last us till our next anniversary! Normal service resumes on this page next week.

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