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Shah Rukh Khan to take Zero to China, hopes for Dangal success

Shah Rukh Khan will present his recent film Zero at China’s premiere international film festival.

bollywood Updated: Apr 11, 2019 14:52 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis
Sutirtho Patranobis
Hindustan Times
Shah Rukh Khan,Zero,Dangal
Bollywood actor and co-owner of Kolkata Knight Riders Shah Rukh Khan greets spectators after the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Eden Gardens Stadium.(AFP)

Shah Rukh Khan, often called the King of Bollywood, is expected in Beijing next week for the city’s top international film festival where his movie Zero is the designated closing film.

Khan’s detailed schedule in the city is yet to be released but besides interacting with the audience during the Beijing International Film Festival (BIFF), he is expected to speak at a discussion on Sino-India films.

Though Aamir Khan is easily the most-recognised Indian movie star in China, Shah Rukh Khan is not unknown.

Indian movie lovers in China will remember Khan’s 2010 drama, My Name is Khan; among his later movies released in China were Happy New Year and Fan. None of his movies, however, did well at the Chinese box office.

Khan would want that to change in the backdrop of how well Aamir’s Dangal did in 2017; not only did it make crores in China, it touched an emotional chord with the Chinese audience who identified with the movie’s storyline.

China’s box office is only second to the US in value; China’s box office receipts in 2018 hit a record 60.98 billion yuan or $8.87 billion.

Since Dangal, Indian film stars, directors and producers have been eyeing that massive box office. But is there a winning formula? What are the possibilities of Indian films doing well in China?

Those will be among the topics Khan will talk about at the “China-India Film Cooperation Dialogue”, besides discussing a possible common development path for Indian and Chinese movies.

Among those he will share the stage with are Indian film director Kabir Khan, and Chinese film director, Wen Muye, whose 2018 movie Dying to Survive was about a Chinese man smuggling Indian cancer medicines into China.

“In recent years, Indian films have entered the Chinese market one after another…However, from 2017, while the film Dangal swept 1.3 billion yuan ($190 million) in box office in mainland China and created the “miracle moment” of Indian movies in China, more and more Indian movies such as Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Secret Superstar became popular in the Chinese film market,” a BIFF statement said on the Sino-India film dialogue said.

“Both China and India are countries with large film production, and Chinese and Indian films have many commonalities and potential for cooperation,” the BIFF statement added.

“The dialogue seeks ways for the common development of Chinese and Indian films and creates more opportunities for further strengthening China-India film cooperation,” the statement said, adding that Khan is among the participants in it.

First Published: Apr 11, 2019 14:52 IST