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'Never expected Agneepath to get such a bumper opening'

Last updated on: January 30, 2012 14:57 IST

Karan Johar: Never expected Agneepath to get such a bumper opening

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Ankur Pathak in Mumbai
As Agneepath opened to fantastic box office collections, the key players decided to address the media and talk about the film's success.
 
As the industry was abuzz with trade reports indicating that Agneepath has opened to an unprecedented box office welcome, netting a cool Rs 25 crores in its very first day, Dharma Productions called in the press at Yash Raj Studios on Friday evening to celebrate the unmatched first-day triumph.

"As a son, I have taken my revenge on the public. I have avenged my father's flop," Karan Johar jokingly told reporters. The original Agneepath, also a Dharma Production, released back in 1990, had failed to make any significant box office receipts.

"It has been a daunting task to remake a film of Agneepath's calibre; it has been a very special film for us. The credit for restructuring the classic goes to the vision of one man -- Karan Malhotra," Karan Johar said, praising the film's director. He added, "The technical team as well as the film's cast did a great job of matching his vision."

Image: Hrithik Roshan, Priyanka Chopra, Karan Malhotra, Sanjay Dutt, Rishi Kapoor
Photographs: Pradeep Bandekar

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Hrithik Roshan: The pain and the struggle we have gone through in the past few months have paid off

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Specifically stressing on the bumper opening and the weekend records, Karan Johar acknowledged the marketing team's efforts too: "The figures would not have been the same without their well-thought-out strategies and PR tactics."

The leading star of the film, Hrithik Roshan, was in a state of elation unseen in Bollywood actors who are superficially modest when their films are a success.
 
Taking the stage, the actor literally screeched into the mike before composing himself a little. "I am going through a spectrum of emotions. I don't have words for this feeling. I can encompass all of this in only two words: Thank You. This has been my dream, my purpose, my fuel. The pain and the struggle we have gone through in the past few months have paid off," he said.

Image: Hrithik Roshan
Photographs: Pradeep Bandekar

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Karan Johar: Our film is a tribute more than a remake

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He went on to compliment the supporting cast and crew of the film. "I stand on the shoulders of a giant -- the giant team of Agneepath. Guys, we did it!" he yelled. 

Asked whether this was a worthy remake of the original, Karan Johar said, "Our film is a tribute more than a remake. It's a tribute to the memory of my father, to the late Mukul Anand, to the memory of Agneepath. 

"Making a cult classic comes with a lot of expectations and baggage. To fight against it and make a mark of your own is a big thing. 

"I think Karan Malhotra has made this film with his conviction and he is the reason all of us are here today."

Image: Priyanka Chopra
Photographs: Pradeep Bandekar

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Karan Johar: I'm stunned that I'm on top of the biggest opening day grosser list

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"I never thought we would get such an astounding response. I've not had my name on the biggest opening day grosser list since the past few years. Now I'm stunned that I'm on top of that," Karan added.

He went on to say that audiences did not perceive the first Agneepath as a flop, only the trade did. Over the decades it became a popular film on DVD and video. "So we didn't really make a flop film; we took a perceived success and converted it into a potential blockbuster," he finished.

Image: Hrithik Roshan and Priyanka Chopra
Photographs: Pradeep Bandekar
Tags: Karan , DVD

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Rishi Kapoor: I had refused the part because I believed I could look bad but not evil

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Veteran actor Rishi Kapoor, who has got rave reviews for his performance as the gangster-pimp, couldn't stop thanking Karan Johar and director Karan Malhotra. 

"It was their confidence and conviction in me that made me enact this role. I had refused the part because I believed I could look bad but not evil. These two had a lot of faith in me whereas I thought I was the most unlikely actor for such a part," he said.

Debutant director Karan Malhotra was visibly elated. He said, "Right now I just want to absorb the success of Agneepath. It is not as if I'm going to only direct cult films of the past. As we move on, I will decide on my next one."

Leading lady Priyanka Chopra looked pretty in a black dress and showed her gratitude. "I'm excited because it's the first month of the year and we have a blockbuster. People have liked my part and I'm just too pleased."

Image: Karan Johar, Sanjay Dutt, Rishi Kapoor, Karan Malhotra
Photographs: Pradeep Bandekar

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