Many film lovers and historians don’t consider Hum Aapke Hai Koun as just another blockbuster. For them, it’s a milestone of sorts which brought many changes in the way we saw cinema and these changes can still be seen to this day. The film had a thorough influence on the idea of marriages in India. Many communities in India didn’t have the custom of hiding a groom’s shoes but it became commonplace after this well-made entertainer! Also, it was rare film of that era which didn’t have violence and a villain. Yet, there was enough tension generated in the second half and viewers came out thoroughly satisfied. It was a formula used well in few films in the 60s and 70s but with Hum Aapke Hai Koun, this trend got a boost and was seen in many other films later on. Its songs were a rage then, and are memorable even today. To have almost dozen tracks in a film and to have someone breaking into a song in any situation and yet not boring the audience was a feat. And of course, the performances are exemplary by one and all – Salman Khan, Madhuri Dixit, Renuka Shahane, Mohnish Bahl, Laxmikant Berde, Alok Nath etc. The dog Redo also played a crucial part and won the hearts across the country! But the real winner was undoubtedly writer-director Sooraj Barjatya. He put together the whole film so well and knew it’ll work, even when initial reviews slammed the film and called it a ‘wedding video’
But apart from all these achievements, Hum Aapke Hai Koun is also remembered today for its juggernaut box office performance. The strategy today is to release the film in maximum number of screens. Hum Aapke Hai Koun then released in around 35 cinemas, which was still lower than the norm then. The idea was to increase the prints, once the film became popular. As a result, the first day collections of the film were simply Rs. 10 lakhs. The same day – August 5, 1994 – another film also released, Vijaypath. Starring Ajay Devgn and Tabu, it released in around 200 screens and earned Rs. 51 lakhs on Day 1. By the end of the first weekend, Hum Aapke Hai Koun had netted just Rs. 29 lakhs while Vijaypath had managed to accumulate Rs. 1.44 crores. In Week 1, the former earned Rs. 58 lakhs. As for Vijaypath, it had made a healthy collection of Rs. 2.41 crores.
In its lifetime, Vijaypath earned Rs. 6.45 crores. And Hum Aapke Hai Koun earned, believe it or not, Rs. 72.47 crores! This was a time when even earning Rs. 9-10 crore lifetime was an achievement. With each passing week, the craze increased tremendously and soon it was playing in hundreds of screens across the country. As a result, the film earned more than the previous weeks and this went on for almost 25-30 weeks. A year later, it became tax-free in Maharashtra reportedly and this must have also given a boost to the film’s earnings.
Recently, there were articles in the West as to how the recently released blockbuster Avengers: Endgame defeated the 2009 sci-fi flick Avatar to become the biggest movie in history. Several experts pointed that the 1938 classic love saga Gone With The Wind was a bigger hit, when adjusted for inflation. Avengers: Endgame has collected $2.79 billion worldwide while Gone With The Wind made around $3.44 billion worldwide with today’s ticket prices! Similarly, Baahubali 2: The Conclusion’s Hindi version is seen as the biggest hit in the history of Hindi cinema, with its collections of Rs. 510.99 crores. But if we talk of Hum Aapke Hai Koun, then its adjusted nett gross comes to around Rs. 711.29 crores! This mind-boggling figure shows what sort of a historic blockbuster this family entertainer was.
This film managed to earn so much as it was seen by 7.4 crore people, which is also the highest domestic footfalls of any Hindi film released since the 1990s. Baahubali 2: The Conclusion was seen by around 5.25 crore viewers. In the years to come, some film will surely go past the Rs. 711.29 crores figure of Hum Aapke Hai Koun. But thanks to the newer avenues of entertainment and rising ticket prices, it’s unfortunate that probably no film will ever have as much footfalls as Hum Aapke Hai Koun! On the 25th anniversary of this flick, we salute the makers for achieving the impossible and making a record that no film might be able to ever break even in the future!