In the past year or so, he has been a part of four big hits from Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai and Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji to Murder 2 and The Dirty Picture. And following this super-successful run, Emraan Hashmi is mulling over demanding a hefty hike in his remuneration.
Industry insiders reveal that Emraan is planning to quote up to Rs 10 crore for all fresh projects from now on. At present, the actor is shooting for Vishesh Films’ Jannat 2, followed by Raj Kumar Gupta’s Ghanchakkar.
Although talk of the proposed hike has raised a few eyebrows in the industry, trade experts feel he is becoming increasingly saleable with each film. “Every actor raises his price after delivering hits. Business-wise, there’s a comfort level with Emraan now,” says Komal Nahta, editor of Koimoi.com.
At the same time, tradesmiths almost unanimously agree that commanding Rs 10 crore will be a challenge for the serial kisser. “But his brand equity has been going up constantly. Right now, Emraan ranks second — after Salman Khan — in terms of pure mass appeal,” says trade analyst Taran Adarsh.
When contacted, Emraan refuses to discuss the exact figure. He adds, “All I can say is that it’s only fair if an actor’s remuneration is in proportion to his film’s collections and Friday opening. So, if Once Upon A Time… opens at Rs 7 crore, Murder 2 opens at Rs 8 crore and The Dirty Picture hits Rs 9.5 crore, it obviously guarantees a certain increase in remuneration. But I assure you that it’s always going to be a sane hike.”
Emraan’s producers have rechristened the actor 'Hitman Hashmi'. Says producer Ekta Kapoor, “Emraan is the kind of actor who guarantees success at the box office. Plus, he has a massive fan following.”
According to trade guesstimates, only Ranbir Kapoor and Shahid Kapoor are believed to have charged around R 10 crore. The likes of Abhishek Bachchan, Imran Khan and John Abraham are yet to touch the magical figure. Of course, the three Khans — Shah Rukh, Salman and Aamir — charge about Rs 27-28 crore a film, besides taking a share in the profits. Others like Hrithik Roshan and Ajay Devgn charge about Rs 20 crore per film.
Emraan, on his part, insists that all the exhibitors and distributors have made money from his films. “Even with my flops, they haven’t lost as much as they would lose on other films,” he asserts.