'If he gets bail, he will bounce back.'
Syed Firdaus Ashraf reports.
Even as Salman Khan looks at a jail term of five years in the blackbuck poaching case, there is approximately Rs 400 crore (Rs 4 billion) riding on him thanks to his pending projects.
Fortunately for the producers, shooting has not begun for Bharat, Kick 2 and Dabangg 3, the three Salman projects announced so far.
"He has completed shooting for Race 3," says trade analyst Amod Mehra. "Even if we consider that dubbing is not done yet, its budget is Rs 150 crore (Rs 1.5 billion)."
Race 3, co-starring Jacqueline Fernandez, Daisy Shah, Bobby Deol and Anil Kapoor, is set for a June 15 release.
Bharat is to be directed by Ali Abbas Zafar, who made Tiger Zinda Hai and Sultan with Salman earlier.
Kick 2 will be directed by Sajid Nadiadwala, and is a sequel of the Rs 300 crore blockbuster.
Dabangg 3 will be produced by Salman's brother Arbaaz Khan and is in the scripting stage. Prabhudeva is directing the film.
The next season of the successful television show Dus Ka Dum has also been announced.
"If you calculate roughly on the higher side, which includes Salman's endorsements, the cost to the industry would be around Rs 400 crore," Mehra says.
"It will be a huge setback (to the industry) if Salman Khan does not get bail," he adds.
"If he gets bail, he will bounce back," Mehra asserts. "His image will not get tarnished. His fans will not bother."
"It will not affect Salman's brand," says Bollywood pundit Vinod Mirani.
"The case has taken too long (the animals were killed in September-October 1998 during the shooting of Hum Saath Saath Hai). These things fade from public memory."
"In India," adds Mirani, "it is the other way round. Rather than losing goodwill, they earn public sympathy."
Of the 10 biggest box office hits in India, three are his.
Bajrangi Bhaijan (2015) earned Rs 957 crore (Rs 9.57 billion) at the box office worldwide.
Sultan (2016) earned Rs 589 crore (Rs 5.89 billion).
Tiger Zinda Hai (2017) earned Rs 569 crore (Rs 5.69 billion) at last count.
When Forbes India released its Celebrity 100 list last year, Salman topped the list for the second year running.
He earned Rs 232.83 crore (Rs 2.32 billion), thanks to his films Tubelight and Tiger Zinda Hai, and endorsements.
According to a report in Business World, Salman charged Rs 4 crore (Rs 40 million) a day for brand endorsements, which included Thums Up, Revita, Yatra.com, Splash and Relaxo in 2017.
He also promotes brands like Dixcy Scott, Yellow Diamond, Astral Pipe, CP Plus, Emami Healthy and Tasty Oil, Being Human and Rotomac.