This decade saw the rise and fall of the biggest stalwarts from the industry. While a lot has been spoken about the star-power of the actors, here’s a series that analyzes in-depth the strengths and weaknesses of the top 10 Bollywood stars, and ranks them based on their performance this decade taking into account factors like magnitude of success, opening day collections, consistency, potential, awareness, and loyal fan following. The one who scores high on all the fronts will be crowned the STAR OF THIS DECADE.
Number 8 on the list is Ranbir Kapoor and here’s a report card at how he fared between 2010 and 2019.
Ever since the release of Saawaariya, Ranbir Kapoor is touted as a powerhouse of talent, who has the potential to be the gen-next superstar, and deservingly so. To his credit, he has showcased his potential by getting crowds to the cinema hall in big numbers a few times, however lacked consistency in the same. He started this decade on a high with multi-starrer, Raajneeti, wherein despite stalwarts of the industry like Ajay Devgn and Nana Patekar in the cast, he walked away with a lot of praise. He followed that up with Anjaana Anjaani and Rockstar, which though were not as big a success as one expected, proved to be very good openers for Ranbir, which hinted at a sign of his stardom and pull among the youth and female population of the nation. After the three films, he was working simultaneously on Barfi and Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewani. While Barfi came up with no expectations and proved to be a surprise success, and also the first solo Rs. 100 crore earner for Ranbir, YJHD, which released a year later, was an even bigger success, by becoming one of the highest grossing films of all time.
The near double digit opening of Barfi followed by a record non-holiday opening of Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewani, put Ranbir on a front foot this decade as far as stardom was concerned. However, he got his first major setback this decade in the form of Dabangg director Abhinav Kashyap’s Besharam. While the film took a super start at the box-office on October 2, thanks to Ranbir’s goodwill and pull, it came down like a pack of cards the second day onwards once the horrible word of mouth started flowing in. Besharam was followed by series of even bigger failures this decade for the actor, Roy, Bombay Velvet, which is one of the biggest loss-making films in the history of Indian cinema, and the much awaited Tamasha, which got back the Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani pairing of RK and Deepika Padukone. The four back to back failures put a major dent on Ranbir’s standing this decade, as it included films that just failed to take a decent start at the box-office. The first half of this decade started on a high for Ranbir, but ended in the worst possible manner, and also hampered his positioning in the industry.
2010 – 2015:
2010: Rs. 133.95 crores (2 Films)
2011: Rs. 68.55 crores (1 Film)
2012: Rs. 112.15 crore (1 Film)
2013: Rs. 248.36 crore (2 Films)
2015: Rs. 135.45 crores (3 Films)
2016 – 2019:
But obvious, the actor slowed down after the same and took his time to select the scripts to make a comeback. In 2016, he got a breather in the form of Karan Johar’s romantic saga, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, which was a hit despite the underperformance at the box-office vis.a.vis expectations, primarily due to the controlled budget. However, the success of ADHM was followed by another big budget failure of the much delayed action adventure, Jagga Jasoos. The film appealed to the kids, and went wrong on several grounds in terms of positioning, major one being too much of money invested on a genre that was more of an experiment. Rajkumar Hirani’s Sanju proved to be one of the biggest blockbusters of all time, however as we all know, there are two directors – Rajkumar Hirani and Rohit Shetty – who are a brand in themselves and in case of Sanju, Ranbir alone wasn’t entitled to get the sole credit for success. Yes, it placed him in the list of top grossing films but, it’s more of one of scenario and he needs to prove his worth by consistently delivering the big grossers. While he ended the decade on a high with a big grosser and bumper opener, the lack of consistency and shortfall of releases in second half of the decade puts him in a hazy scenario.
2016: Rs. 112.48 crores (1 Film)
2017: Rs. 54.16 crores (1 Film)
2018: Rs. 342.53 crores (1 Film)
The number crunching analysis:
Our understanding suggests that the biggest strength of Ranbir is also his biggest flaw. While the success of Barfi gave him the confidence to take risk and work with directors who aren’t really known to have a good commercial track record, he ideally went down the hill due to the wrong decisions taken by him in the course of taking risks.
Hypothetically, had Barfi not worked, Ranbir might not have taken as many risks as he took post that. His career was sailing smooth by signing on for films in the commercial space, however the Anurag Kashyaps and Imtiaz Alis of the world single-handedly changed his perception of cinema and took him in a zone that doesn’t make an actor a star. A well-made commercial film has time and again showcased Ranbir’s ability to pull in the audience, as there is a fan following among the youth. But the fact that he hasn’t really taken them up is a worrisome factor. He should get back to the commercial space, satisfy the demand of the audience and consolidate his position as a star. His films may not have worked, but undoubtedly, he is among the best we have.
Where does Ranbir Kapoor go from here?
Ideally, a brilliant actor like Ranbir Kapoor should first work towards improving his script sense and understand the dynamics of the audience in India. Once he gets a knack of stuff that works and stuff that doesn’t, he would be in a position to utilize his talent and invest his time on films that would get him the desired results. Romance is a genre that tends to get stale with age, and he is relatively young at this point of time, he should cater to the audience of this cinema and cultivate an image of “the modern king of romance”. That aside, he can also sign on for the content driven films in the commercial space (Aamir Khan zone), something like Sanju, which will utilize his talent and also give big box office returns. A balance between risk and safety is a must for Ranbir, and we hope he does that. In the coming decade, he opens his account with Shamshera and Brahmastra, and interestingly, both the films have the potential to set the box-office ablaze but however, are equally risky.
Finally Summary at a glance:
Total Collections: Rs. 1207.63 crores
Total Films: 12
Average/Film: Rs. 100.58 crores