Dabangg. Bodyguard. Ek Tha Tiger. Kick. Bajrangi Bhaijaan. Sultan. Six films that have shattered the box office during the period, spanning over 8 years. Actually, it started with Wanted in 2009, which although wasn't a Blockbuster, it was a huge success nonetheless and really started the comeback of the superstar.
That has been the dominance of Salman Khan!
There were two exceptions, of course. The first in 2013 when Salman didn't have a release, and another Khan (Shah Rukh) delivered the highest grosser ever at the time with Chennai Express. Then there was last year, when Tubelight failed at the box office much to the shock of everyone, although that largely had to do with the fact that Salman was presented in a way that his fans didn't want to see him in the film.
This year is a different story though. Race 3 has Salman in an action avatar, with some mass-appealing dialogues (mouthed by him), songs (Heeriye is a hit), and glamorous heroines as well. It's not a similar case as to Tubelight which was missing all of these mass-appealing ingredients. On top of that, it is the return of a franchise which has featured two successful films in the past. Race (2008) was a craze even before it released, as it went on to break the opening day record upon its release and then went on to become a box office success after receiving appreciation from the audience. Although Race 2 (2013) didn't fare as well as Race in terms of appreciation, the film did turn out to be a decent success nonetheless and managed to get near the 100 crore mark at a time where that was still considered noteworthy.
Having said all of this, it is known to one and all by now that Race 3 has become a joke of sorts on social media. The dialogue in the trailer where Daisy Shah says "our business is our business, none of your business has been laughed/mocked at, and absolutely ridiculed! As bad as many thought that dialogue was, I don't think it was as bad as Saqib's "I am sick of this Siku, Dad! dialogue. The trailer itself was not received well on social media, with many targeting the poor dialogues and over-the-top action scenes as some described. If that wasn't enough, the Selfish song released, only to get ridiculed yet again!
What's important though is to note the difference between online and ground reality. Yes, I won't deny that online social media feedback can be similar to ground reality, especially when we are thinking of the class audience. I am certain that the class audience will reject the film (await the 4/10 IMDb rating!). With that being said, Salman Khan has a huge fanbase across India that spans way beyond just the class centres. His following extends to nook and corners of India. Whereas last year's Tubelight failed to impress the class and mass audience in India, Race 3 will be able to at least please the mass audience, who are looking for those ingredients I had mentioned in the third paragraph.
So, what's the verdict?
Race 3 is going to be a huge success at the box office. Another feather in the cap for the continued dominance of Salman Khan!
Where will the film's lifetime collections finish in comparison to Salman's other films? Less than Tiger Zinda Hai, Bajrangi Bhaijaan, and Sultan, all of which had a universal appreciation. There are expectations from some of Race 3 crossing the 300 crore mark, but all of the films that have crossed that mark had strong storylines with human emotions/connect with the All-India audience, whereas Race 3 doesn't appear to have that. With my prediction of Race 3 carrying mixed public reports, I feel that the film will finish ahead of Kick (211 crore nett), but below Sultan (300 crore nett). Kick was also a mass-appealing action film with grand production values starring Salman and Jacqueline, but this time they have that the added benefit of the Race brand name and a couple of more notable names in the star cast (such as Anil Kapoor and Bobby Deol), and a four year gap (meaning higher ticket prices and more screens for Race 3), so Race 3's collections are sure to be higher than Kick's.
If we look at films released this year, I feel that Race 3 will fall short of the highest grosser of the year Padmaavat (284 crore nett) as that film was carrying extraordinary public reports.
A side note about Bobby Deol: there has been a lot of talk created regarding his new image, where has gotten into great shape (quite the contrast from the big-bearded look he was carrying not too long ago!) and although the films he does in the future will decide if he is able to make a comeback, props must be given to him for his dedication to working on his body. Of course, that must've been due to great motivation from Mr.Salman himself!
In conclusion, Salman's going to have his 7th major success during the Eid festival this decade!
As always, you can follow me on Twitter at http://mobile.twitter.com/bobbys_bo