Bollywood's 'Dangal' sets new benchmarks for success abroad

The movie quickly became the highest-grossing Bollywood film of all time, beating PK, which also stars Aamir Khan

Afp June 29, 2017
Dangal movie cover. PHOTO: PUBLICITY

Bollywood star Aamir Khan's hit wrestling movie Dangal has become the first Indian film to make 20 billion rupees, analysts said Wednesday, as it takes China's cinemas by storm.

The Hindi movie's record-breaking run has set a new and previously unthought of box office benchmark for Bollywood films abroad while also highlighting the value of the Chinese audience to Indian filmmakers.

"Dangal has crossed the 2,000 crore mark (20 billion rupees or $310 million) which has never been done before," Indian film trade analyst Ramesh Bala told AFP, pointing out that previous top Bollywood grosser PK made just $120 million.

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"Even 1,000 crore was a distant dream just a few months back. The bar has now been set very high," he added.

Dangal, directed by Nitesh Tiwari, is based on the true story of wrestling coach Mahavir Singh Phogat, who defies the odds by raising his daughters Geeta and Babita Phogat to become champion wrestlers.

Geeta won a gold medal for India at the 2010 Commonwealth Games while her sister topped the podium at the same event in 2014.

Dangal is a Hindi word used to describe a wrestling competition.

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The movie was released in India on December 23 last year and quickly became the highest-grossing Bollywood film of all time, beating the 2014 science fiction film PK, which also stars Khan.

Gender discrimination and strict parenting are among the film's themes. The issues appear to have struck an emotional response with Chinese viewers, who have alone contributed around $190 million to Dangal's takings, said Bala.

"Dangal has become the highest-grossing non-Hollywood foreign film released in China," the analyst added.

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Feroz | 3 years ago | Reply | Recommend We must remember that the entertainment industry generates huge revenue and profits for America. If India can also capture a significant share of the huge global entertainment market whether through movies, music etc, its trade balances will get a boost. One needs to know what sells in which market and make a product to cater to it. One size fit all strategy will not work.
vinsin | 3 years ago | Reply | Recommend @Sokultu: Pakistan also objected showing of Indian flag in Dangal. And there is a reason for those things. Indian National anthem was about undivided subcontinent and contains word like Sind. But the reality is different, Sind is now part of Pakistan not India anymore. Indian national flag is that of congress of British India which also shows congress as representation of subcontinent Muslims but in reality even at its height only 1.5% of Subcontinent Muslims supported congress in 1946 election. China is not bothered about India national anthem or flag as they cannot understand symbolism of those in subcontinent. So Pakistan decision to ban Dangal justified. As Jinnah said, Pakistan is now reality. I think both nation need to get mature and pragmatic accept the reality of partition.
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