While Bollywood's report card for last year showed a dismal performance, owing to producers' strike and recession, the year 2010 has been rocking so far in terms of box-office returns.
It seems, B-town is recovering from last year's blues and is inching towards a boom. Movies like Raajneeti, Dabangg, My Name Is Khan, Housefull, Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai, Anjaana Anjaani and Endhiran have set the right mood. Even stars are hiking prices.
Sample this: Salman Khan after the success of Dabangg is charging a cool Rs 21 crore with share in profits for his upcoming film Bodyguard. Ranbir Kapoor would be taking back home Rs 10 crore for his next. Saif Ali Khan would get Rs 13 crore for Agent Vinod. Shahid Kapoor is reportedly getting Rs 8-9 core for Mausam. Aamir Khan's nephew Imran Khan, who has just one hit film under his belt, is already charging Rs 7 crore for Meri Brother Ki Dulhan opposite Katrina Kaif.
In a recent interview, Kareena Kapoor has indicated that she might charge Rs 5 crore for Karan Johar's next.
In 2009, even festive season like Diwali, could not garner a single hit - all the three movies All the best, Main Aur Mrs Khanna and Blue fell flat at the BO. A lot of movies in 2009 got critical acclaim and a decent collection, but only 3 Idiots could set the box-office rolling.
The sluggish trade reflected on the taxes paid by Bollywood celebrities also that showed a significant drop, if compared to 2008.
Akshay Kumar, who rocked in 2008, could not re-create his magic with films like Blue, 8x10 Tasveer doing bad business in 2009. Result? He slipped from his No.1 position as taxpayer this time.
The good news is that there're still 3 months before Bollywood can present its final report card. So will upcoming releases like Golmaal 3, Action Replayy, Guzaarish, Break Ke Baad, No Problem and Christmas surprise Tees Maar Khan unleash the box-office magic? Only time will tell.