Diwali has traditionally been lucrative time for major Bollywood releases. Year after year, an average of two (and at times even three or four) films release on the festive occasion. However, in 2013, it was for the first time ever in the decade gone by that a solo release arrived on Diwali in the form of Krrish 3. The film was a huge blockbuster. This was followed by Shah Rukh Khan’s solo release Happy New Year on Diwali 2014 and then Salman Khan’s Prem Ratan Dhan Payo on Diwali 2015. However, 2016 had Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Shivaay coming in together.
This year, Golmaal Again and Secret Superstar arrived together and both films carried own merits. Golmaal Again is fourth in the series of the huge franchise that has been built by Rohit Shetty and Ajay Devgn. Each of the three films prior to this has been a commercial success and the family entertaining feel has ensured that this Diwali too saw fireworks explode. No wonder, the film has now crossed the 150 crore, hence stepping into a zone where it would be gaining Blockbuster status for itself.
Here is looking at some of major money spinners during last 10 years (since 2007) that have made merry on the occasion of Diwali.
Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016) - 112.50 crore
The film arrived amidst quite a few controversies and there was a point when one wondered if it would actually make it for the Diwali release. However, the Karan Johar directed film did arrive eventually and turned out to be a good success. It opened well, had a good follow through and eventually crossed the 100 crore milestone. The film is also one of the rare successes that Ranbir Kapoor has enjoyed for long.
Shivaay (2016) - 100.30 crore
A dream project by Ajay Devgn, it opened lower than Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and also had a lesser weekend. However, it did catch up well in days to come and eventually managed to enter the 100 Crore Club. There were expectations of a much bigger number from the film but the clash meant that it had to settle at 20-25 crore lesser. It did quite well on satellite circuits though and kept Ajay Devgn's Diwali record intact.
Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (2015) – 210 crore
It was the hottest Salman Khan film ever on its release and had a huge all-India opening day (40.35 crore). The film, which was released on Thursday, enjoyed a very healthy four day weekend of 129.77 crore though the follow through wasn’t as superb. From its first week collections (165.45 crore), it could add only around 45 crore more. Still, the power of a huge opening allowed the Sooraj Barjatya-Salman Khan combo to emerge as a clean Hit.
Happy New Year (2014) – 205 crore
When it opened, a huge Opening Day record of 42.6 crore was set. This was also the first time when the 40 crore mark was crossed on the very first day of release. For Shahrukh Khan and Farah Khan, this was a sweet way of setting up their hat-trick film after Main Hoon Naa and Om Shanti Om. While the weekend was held quite well (104 crore) and the opening week was strong too (152 crore), the collections did fall from the second week on with just around 50 crore more coming in its lifetime. The film wrapped up soon but not before entering the 200 crore club, hence turning out to be a Superhit.
Krrish 3 (2013) – 244 crore
Rakesh Roshan and Hrithik Roshan delivered their biggest blockbuster till date in the form of Krrish 3. The franchise has only turned huger with every passing release and the film's mega success has ensured that there would be fourth in the series too. The film stays on to be a huge Diwali bonanza till date and for the Roshans it is now time to kick-start Krrish 4 that would emerge as one of the biggest from Bollywood.
Jab Tak Hai Jaan (2012) - 122 crore
In the immediate year after the arrival of Ra. One, Shahrukh Khan did have a relatively better outing with Jab Tak Hai Jaan. The last outing of Yash Chopra was marred in controversy (due to clash with Son of Sardaar). However Shahrukh and Aditya Chopra went ahead with their original plans and gave the film an event release. Mixed response meant that the film crossed 100 crores but didn't scale many highs.
Son Of Sardaar (2012) - 102 crore
One of the most lucrative times at the box office was in year 2012 when Son of Sardaar and Jab Tak Hai Jaan released on the same day. Though there was much bad blood spilling over in public due to issue around sharing of screens between the two films, eventually Ajay Devgn did manage to keep his Diwali record intact and hit a century at the box office.
Ra. One (2011) -115 crore
Ra. One could well hold an unlikely distinction of being one of the highest Diwali grosser ever and still face the ignominy of being panned by many. It took a thunderous start and was immensely liked by the kids especially. However, just like the rise, there was a steep fall too with fast spreading negative word of mouth resulting in its downfall. Ironically, it was Shahrukh Khan's highest grosser till date back then.
Golmaal 3 (2010) - 108 crore
Ajay Devgn and Rohit Shetty were sure that they wanted to make amends over Golmaal Returns and improve manifold with third in the series. They managed to do quite well too with Golmaal 3 taking a thunderous start at the box office, while eclipsing Action Replayy. Audience came in hordes to watch the comedy which was much bigger and better. The film went on to bring in over 100 crore at the box office.
All the Best (2009) - 42 crore
Ajay Devgn and Rohit Shetty were turning out to be a successful combo from the Golmaal franchise and their next comedy together, All The Best, proved to be successful too. Though it was Akshay Kumar's Blue (which released alongside) taking a better start at the box office and All The Best was slow to begin with, it ended up being stable and enjoyed a longer run.
Golmaal Returns (2008) - 52 crore
Even before All The Best turned into a good success, Ajay Devgn had made a mark on Diwali with Golmaal Returns. Though the film was panned by critics all around, audience didn't seem to mind it and helped the film take a superb opening at the box office. The film managed to cross the 50 crore mark and though not many associated with it would recall it very fondly today, the franchise was well established.
Om Shanti Om (2007) - 80 crore
Shahrukh Khan's proclamation of 'destroying' anything and everything that came in his way proved true as Om Shanti Om went on to literally crush Sanjay Leela Bhansali's competition in the form of Saawariya. There was no sympathy shown towards emergence of wonder-kid Ranbir Kapoor as Shahrukh Khan and Farah Khan methodically planned their campaign and ended up scoring 80 crore at the box office.
Note: All collections as per production and distributor sources