Hrithik Roshan's latest release Mohenjo Daro failed to perform at the box office. The film which clashed with Rustom released on 12th August and collected approx 60 cr in its lifetime run. It was declared a flop.
It is now an open secret that Mohenjo Daro was not a bad film at all. It was a decent entertainer and had the potential to cross 100 crore or even more. Then what went wrong with the film?
Unfortunately, a special negativity campaign was launched against the film especially on the social media. There were also few other factors. It was a mixture of negativity, carelessness of UTV and smart marketing of Rustom team which lead to Mohenjo Daro failure.
The first look of Hrithik Roshan made a huge impact on social and electronic media. But the promo was just about decent and from here a negativity campaign was started. The media and trade were negative against Mohenjo Daro from the day 1. Most of the trade pundits declared Mohenjo Daro a lost cause even before the release which was unethical. Negative reviews were spread on social media when it was yet to be screened.
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Few people from trade were associated with Akshay Kumar's Rustom. Thus the trade was biased against Mohenjo Daro. Bollywood celebrities started to promote Rustom and most of them ignored Mohenjo Daro as if it was not releasing. The perception started to change quickly and on Thursday night it was clear that Rustom will take a big lead over Mohenjo Daro. However, unlike media, Akshay Kumar was supporting both films. He only did his job which was promotion.
When the film released on Friday, few analysts started to write that Mohenjo Daro morning shows have been cancelled due to no audience. The early reviews were also negative and ironically the critics which liked and loved films like Housefull 3 and Dishoom, were complaining about logic and VFX in Mohenjo Daro. The damage was done in the first two days and it was impossible for MD to make a comeback after that.
Mohenjo Daro was a big budget film in which 120 crore were spent. Ideally, whole Bollywood should have promoted this film as there was a lot of money on stake. This year was proved not so good at the box office as Hollywood films were dominating. Instead of supporting, Bollywood got busy in playing dirty games. It indicates that there is no unity in the industry. For them, ego and money matter the most. Thus, there is no surprise why production houses are being shut down.
Here we would like to mention UTV's role in the scenario.
Back in July, a few people from the media sensed that there is a campaign going on against Mohenjo Daro. It was brought into UTV notice but they took no action. Their response was that we had confidence in our product and it will run despite the negativity.
Many don't know that Mohenjo Daro screening was cancelled in UAE on Thursday and only a few early shows were held. Our representative in Dubai told us about the delay as many fans were disappointed. We contacted UTV and told that MD screening is not being held in UAE. However, they did not even care to reply and did nothing. It was a surprise that the production house is itself is not interested in their film. Actually, they were indifferent from the first day.
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The box office has changed a lot in recent times. Now social media and entertainment/trade websites play a major role in shaping the opinion of the general public. Rather than relying on their instinct, people like to read critics/trade verdict before watching a film.
The final word is that Mohenjo Daro flopped due to a negativity campaign and poor handling of UTV. Otherwise, it should have done much better. The industry should take a deep look at the dirty games played behind the door. We also urge the production houses to take films seriously.