I have always emphasised on the importance of right economics. After a film-maker locks the story, the next thing he ought to do is work on the economics of the film. Let's not turn a blind eye to the number of casualties we've witnessed in the past. Ironically, though we understand how important it is to make a film in the right budget, we often go wrong when it comes to the remuneration of the lead man in particular.
That's where Aamir Khan gets it right. Had he sold TAARE ZAMEEN PAR and now DHOBI GHAT as an 'Aamir Khan film', the economics would've gone haywire. But he didn't. In fact, the cost of production of DHOBI GHAT is as low as Rs. 5 cr and if one adds the P&A expenses to it, the total cost doesn't exceed Rs. 8 cr. Well, recovering this figure is a cakewalk for Aamir, since the Satellite market is really booming and Aamir should be able to recover the entire cost and make money from the sale of Satellite Rights itself. Like I pointed out earlier, the theatrical business in India, Overseas and also the revenue generated from Home Video should come as bonus.
Not merely the actor, everyone associated with a film should benefit from it. Aamir has always ensured this. In fact, Aamir could've sold various territories for lucrative prices, but he has been very, very vocal about DHOBI GHAT being art house cinema and didn't market or release it keeping his super-strong brand in mind. Of course, Aamir's presence has made that big difference to the business of this film, since the audience understands that Aamir will back a film [as an actor or film-maker] only if it's worth it.
Does it mean that all low cost films have a smooth ride at the box-office? The truth is that low cost films find it extremely difficult to get the right distributor in the first place. Getting the right release [the right theatres and right show timings] come much later. Films like TERE BIN LADEN, UDAAN, KHICHDI, PHAS GAYE RE OBAMA were rich in merits, no doubt, but the presence of powerful names behind the scenes was largely responsible for them getting a good release.
Similarly, DHOBI GHAT stands to benefit not only because it's a well-made film, but also because Aamir and UTV are backing this product.