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Home > Movies > Bollywood News

2007: Yash Raj's flop show

Aminah Sheikh | December 14, 2007 19:09 IST

A still from Chak De! India

Yash Chopra might just be losing his magic touch. The year 2007 has been the worst for the production house in the last three years going by return on investment. By the production house's own admission, Yash Raj Films has earned a return of just 10 per cent from five blockbusters this year against 85 percent from just three films last year. The production house earned a 50 per cent return in 2005 and 150 per cent in 2004.

"Yash Raj Films has come out cumulatively profitable across its slate of five films for the year 2007, with an annual return of investment of approximately 10 per cent," said Sanjiv Kohli director and CEO of Yash Raj Films.

With around Rs 140 crore spent in making these films (marketing expenses included), Chopra would have been down under had it not been for Shah Rukh Khan's [Images] Chak De! India.

"The blockbuster hit of the year, Chak De, as well as the successful Ta Ra Rum Pum, have been the drivers of Yash Raj Films profitability for 2007," Kohli admitted. He said these two films overhauled the 'breakeven performance of Laaga Chunari Main Daag and the below par results of Jhoom Barabar Jhoom and Aaja Nachle.'

Industry experts said Aaja Nachle is expected to lose Rs 5 crore to Rs 6 crore. It was made on a budget of Rs 18 crore. In contrast, 2006 was a dream year for Yash Raj Films, with three hits in Dhoom:2, Fanaa and small budget film Kabul Express for which it paid Rs 168 crore as cumulative production costs.

A still from Jhoom Barabar JhoomAt the start of this year, Chopra leveraged his earlier successes to convince multiplexes to sign a five-film deal with revenue-sharing terms that were weighted in his company's favour. The industry standard is 48 percent of revenue earned in the first week and 45 and 30 per cent in second and third weeks respectively. Chopra was able to sign up multiplexes at 50, 45 and 40 percent in the first three weeks. However, with the failure of Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, the production house gave a five percent rebate on the revenue sharing proportion with theatre chains.

With Aaja Nachle unable to attract audiences in its first weekend, industry players are hoping to get a rebate this time as well.

A still from Aaja Nachle"A Yash Raj banner film with Madhuri Dixit [Images] should ideally draw 75 to 80 percent occupancy in multiplexes and 60 percent in single-screens theatres. However, Aaja Nachle has been able to achieve barely 10 to 20 percent occupancy," said film analyst Taran Adarsh.

So will Chopra make a comeback in 2008? Kohli said the production house will churn six to 10 films (as producers, co-producers and distributors) which include Tashan starring Saif Ali Khan [Images], Anil Kapoor [Images] and Kareena Kapoor [Images], animation film Roadside Romeo in collaboration with Walt Disney [Images] and the distribution of Rakesh Roshan's Krazy 4.

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