Not Just A Movie Release But A Nationwide Party: Scores Of People Arrive To Watch ‘Pathaan’

Back in 2014, I went to watch the first-day-first-show for ‘Happy New Year’ at a single-screen movie hall in Kolkata called ‘Menoka’. This particular place is a well-known destination for Shahrukh Khan fans. On every SRK film release, hundreds of fans arrive on trucks with posters and life-size cutouts of the actor. There are flowers, garlands, dhol dhamaka and a celebration. It was no different for ‘Happy New Year’ either. Fans danced to the beats of the dhol, hung huge garlands on the movie poster, and even showered milk on a life-size cut out of the actor!

That day, I came to realise that Shahrukh Khan’s film release is not just any other film release. It’s a country-wide celebration.

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Pre-pandemic and post-pandemic movie watching in theatres are two completely different things. Before 2020, going to the movies was a regular affair. From romantic dates to outings with friends, me-time to family time, going to the theatres and watching the latest releases was like a hobby for many people. But things changed drastically after the pandemic. People stopped going to theatres. Everything is available on OTT platforms at much cheaper rates. Big-hero pictures like ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ were becoming box office flops.

Until Shahrukh Khan arrived with ‘Pathaan’.

 

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All of a sudden, lakhs of people arrived at movie halls and stood in line from early in the morning to watch ‘Pathaan’. It’s like SRK brought back Bollywood from its grave. To see so many people geared up to watch his film, standing in long queues, and dancing inside the movie theatres is unlike anything we have seen in the past couple of years.

Have a look:


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