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Abhay Deol and Aanand L Rai slam the Rs100 crore craze

Over the last few years, the 100 crore club has become a yardstick to measure success. But some people from the Hindi film fraternity aren’t amused by the 100 crore club. Filmmaker Aanand L Rai and actor Abhay Deol have made it quite clear that they belong to the latter category.

Keyur Seta

Aanand L Rai spoke up against the Rs100 crore club during the trailer launch of his new production, Happy Bhag Jaayegi. Speaking about the craze, Rai said, “This is my personal opinion. Even from the time when I was not making films, I have been feeling that we are cheating the audience again and again by promising them a story. We either give them a set-up or a start. This is going on since so long that when we go to the audience now, they don’t trust us. So, for the next five years, we have to fill the story-less pit, which we have dug, with good stories till the time they start trusting us.”

When he was asked about the Rs 100crore club, he responded, “What will we do with Rs100 crore? I have never been able to understand this.” Abhay Deol intervened, “It’s also a calculation. If a film has 5000 screens and another has 200 screens. It (the film with 200 screens) will never reach the numbers of the film with 5000 screens. We are always told, aapki film toh offbeat hai (your film is offbeat).”

Rai added, “The main thing is satisfaction. It’s not just about making a Rs100 crore film. Whenever I make a film, I feel the people who have associated with me shouldn’t face a loss of even a single paisa. How much profit they make is a latter aspect. The prime thing is whether the story I made is reaching my audience, and I am not talking about hit or flop. Rs100 crore should not be the bracket.”

Abhay is also of the opinion that the media is paying too much attention to Rs100 crore. “These days, media is only focussing on Rs100 crore. They are not focussing on films that are breaking some mould or a formula. They won’t speak of a film that showed something different despite not earning much. They will speak about such a film only if it earns Rs100 crore. Why is it that money has become the benchmark of achievement and not creativity?”

The Dev D actor also went on to say that such an achievement is no big deal. “Earning Rs100 crore is nothing at the end of the day yaar. You can put in the right stars and make a Rs100 crore film. It’s not impossible. It happens over and over again. It’s not uncommon to make such a film with the right stars. But it’s very difficult to make a film which breaks the mould.”

Rai and Deol were speaking at the trailer launch of the film at The Kapil Sharma Show.