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4 big Bollywood Diwali clashes at the box office since 2012

Akshay Kumar’s Ram Setu and Sidharth Malhotra-Ajay Devgn’s Thank God are all set for a face-off this Diwali
(L to R) Stills from 2016’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Shivaay.
(L to R) Stills from 2016’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Shivaay.

Saikat Chakraborty   |   Calcutta   |   Published 21.10.22, 03:19 PM

It’s that season of the year when the Bollywood movie calendar hots up as the box office prepares for a mighty battle between a slew of new Diwali releases. Two biggies are going to lock horns during this year’s festival of light, with Akshay Kumar’s mythological action adventure Ram Setu and Sidharth Malhotra-Ajay Devgn’s fantasy comedy Thank God hitting the screens on October 25.

Here’s a look at some of the biggest Diwali clashes at the box office in the last 10 years.


Housefull 4 vs Saand Ki Aankh vs Made In China (2019) 

Just before the pandemic halted theatrical releases, the biographical drama Saand Ki Aankh starring Taapsee Pannu-Bhumi Pednekar and Rajkummar Rao-Mouni Roy-starrer Made In China took on the might of Akshay Kumar-led ensemble comedy Housefull 4

Directed by Farhad Samji, Housefull 4 is a fantasy slapstick comedy revolving around three brothers who are set to marry three sisters. However, things get complicated after they get to know of their earlier incarnations. With an ensemble cast of Akshay Kumar, Riteish Deshmukh, Bobby Deol, Kriti Sanon, Pooja Hegde and Kriti Kharbanda, the film became an instant hit. 

Saand Ki Aankh, directed by Tushar Hiranandani, followed two rural elderly women named Chandro and Prakashi who accidentally discover their shooting skills. With the guidance of an instructor, they become national-level shooters and take part in international tournaments. Saand Ki Aankh was a moderate success at the box office. 

Of the three releases on Diwali 2019, Made In China fared the worst. The comedy film directed by Mikhil Musale explores the struggles of a Gujarati businessman, Raghu, who travels to China in search of new business opportunities. Chaos ensues when he tries to capitalise on a dubious aphrodisiac and pursues a doctor (played by Boman Irani) to help him. Made In China was a box office failure. 

Secret Superstar vs Golmaal Again (2017)

In 2017, Aamir Khan-starrer Secret Superstar clashed with the fourth instalment of Rohit Shetty’s Golmaal series, titled Golmaal Again. And both films did remarkably well. 

The horror action comedy Golmaal Again featured an ensemble cast of Tabu, Ajay Devgn, Parineeti Chopra, Arshad Warsi, Tusshar Kapoor, Shreyas Talpade and Kunal Khemu. The film follows five men who return to the orphanage they grew up in to attend their mentor’s funeral. While staying in the house, they encounter the ghost of their childhood friend Khushi and help her attain salvation. Golmaal Again became a blockbuster and collected more than Rs 200 crore at the box office.

Though it had Aamir Khan’s presence (as an eccentric music director), Advait Chandan’s musical drama Secret Superstar was a small film with a teenager at the centre of it. It’s about Insiaa (Zaira Wasim), a young girl who wants to be a singer but faces stiff resistance from her conservative father (Raj Arjun) with a bad temper. It’s also a mother-and-daughter tale as Insiaa’s mother (Meher Vij) supports her on her mission, first tacitly and then overtly.  Secret Superstar became the surprise hit of the year.

Shivaay vs Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016) 

The highly-anticipated face-off between Ajay Devgn’s Shivaay and Karan Johar’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil starring Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Fawad Khan came with its share of fanfare on Diwali 2016. 

Loosely inspired by the Liam Neeson-starrer Taken, Shivaay is an action thriller directed by Ajay Devgn that centred around a mountaineer’s attempt to retrieve his daughter from a gang of human traffickers who have kidnapped her in Bulgaria. Ajay starred as the angry father on the rescue mission. Shivaay crossed the Rs 100 crore at the box office. 

Pitted against the action thriller was a musical romantic drama of love and longing. Directed by Karan Johar and set in New York, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil  followed the rich and aimless Ayan (played by Ranbir Kapoor), who aspires to become a singer. He falls in love with Alizeh (played by Anushka Sharma), who is in love with someone else, and from there the duo experience heartbreak, love and friendship. Pritam’s music was one of the top draws of the film, which became an average hit but surpassed Shivaay in its box office collections.  

Jab Tak Hai Jaan vs Son Of Sardaar (2012)

During the 2012 Diwali season, legendary filmmaker Yash Chopra’s swan song Jab Tak Hai Jaan, starring Shah Rukh Khan, Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma, fought with yet another Ajay Devgn film — this time an action comedy, titled Son Of Sardaar

Released less than a month after the death of Yash Chopra, Jab Tak Hai Jaan is a romantic drama around a bomb-disposal specialist of the Indian army, Major Samar Anand (Shah Rukh Khan). He is featured in a non-fiction show by free-spirited journalist Akira (Anushka Sharma), who falls in love with him and learns of his past. Before joining the army, Samar had fallen for Meera (Katrina Kaif) in London but had returned to India after she left him. Akira decides to unite the lovers. A.R. Rahman’s soulful romantic soundtrack added to the mood. Jab Tak Hai Jaan became the highest-grossing Bollywood film of 2012.

The Hindi remake of S.S. Rajamouli’s Telugu hit Maryada Ramanna, Son Of Sardaar was headlined by an ensemble cast including Ajay Devgn, Sanjay Dutt, Sonakshi Sinha and Juhi Chawla. The film followed London-based NRI Jaswinder Singh Randhawa (Ajay Devgn), who returns to his hometown to sell off his ancestral property and falls in love with a local woman, only to find out that her family wanted to kill him due to a longstanding family feud. Son of Sardaar became a box-office hit but fell behind Jab Tak Hai Jaan

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