Jackky Bhagnani's production house Pooja Entertainment's Mumbai office sold to pay off ₹250 crore debt: Report | Bollywood - Hindustan Times
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Jackky Bhagnani's production house Pooja Entertainment's Mumbai office sold to pay off 250 crore debt: Report

By | Edited by Sugandha Rawal
Jun 23, 2024 02:09 PM IST

Earlier this week, several people took to social media to call out the production banner run by Jackky Bhagnani and Vashu Bhagnani over non-payment of dues.

Just a day after several crew members accused Pooja Entertainment of not clearing their payments on time, a report by Bollywood Hungama claims that the seven-floor office of the production banner in Mumbai has been sold off to clear off 250 crore debt amid the growing financial hassles. (Also read: Jackky Bhagnani's production house Pooja Entertainment accused of non payment of salaries, unprofessional behaviour)

Pooja Entertainment’s last film Bade Miyan Chote Miyan, starring Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff, was a big dud.
Pooja Entertainment’s last film Bade Miyan Chote Miyan, starring Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff, was a big dud.

As per Bollywood Hungama, the production house is cutting down on its operations following consecutive box office failures. The banner is run by Jackky Bhagnani and his father Vashu Bhagnani.

Money issues

According to trade sources, Vashu has sold the office to a builder. At the moment, the identity of the builder who bought the office and the amount is not out yet. It is being reported that they will demolish the building to create a luxurious residential project on the plot.

The report also claimed that Vashu has ‘sacked almost 80 percent of employees and shifted the office base to a two-bedroom flat in Juhu’. The process of cutting down began in January 2024 after Jagan Shakti’s film featuring Tiger Shroff, was shelved. The decision was taken after the struggle of two years to start it.

When it comes to staff, it was reduced in April, especially after the failure of Bade Miyan Chote Miyan, which starred Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff.

The film was a dud at the box office as it registered a business of 59.17 crores. It was made on a high budget of almost 350 crore. The report states that “Vashu has sold the building to pay off debts to multiple financiers, amounting to approximately Rs. 250 crore”.

“It all started with Bell Bottom, which was one of the first Hindi movie to be released in theatres post the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021. The film flopped badly at the box office and so did the next one, Mission Raniganj. The company faced another setback when the big-budget Ganapath failed to perform and was even rejected by Netflix despite an acquisition deal. Red flags had already begun to appear in the company's financial sheet by this point, and the enormous investment in Bade Miyan Chote Miyan made matters worse,” said a source.

The insider added, “Even still, the firm held out hope that the action entertainer starring Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff would turn around its financial situation. However, the historic failure of this Ali Abbas Zafar directorial almost crippled the company. Vashu had no choice but to sell the building to pay off the enormous debt”.

Not the end

The report also claims that Vashu and Jackky are working on rebooting operations and “have already started discussions with actors and directors for a fresh slate of movies”. In fact, they are also going ahead with Shahid Kapoor’s Ashwatthama project that they announced just a few months back.

Earlier this week, a crew member, Ruchita Kamble, took to Instagram to pen a long post. She even urged others not to work with the production house owned by Jackky and his father, Vashu Bhagnani.

She wrote, “Not the one to ever make such posts but sometimes people need to be ousted! Seeing my team and the crew I worked with struggle day in and out to just get hold of our own hard earned money has compelled me to make this post. Read the sheer frustration of these young girls who have beautifully stated the absolute disregard @pooja_ent has and the sheer unprofessional, unethical behaviour that we all have been tolerating for way too long”.

About the company

Set up in 1986, the banner is known for backing projects such as Coolie no.1, Biwi no.1, Rangrezz, Shaadi no.1 and Jawaani Jaaneman. Pooja Entertainment’s last film was Bade Miyan Chote Miyan starring Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff. The film was a dud at the box office.

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