Joginder Tuteja in Mumbai
Eid, for the past decade, has been dominated by Salman Khan at the box office. Thanks to unprecedented success with six Eid releases in 10 years, no one has dared touch him post Wanted.
However, Salman Khan is set to start shooting for a new film (Sajid Nadiadwala's Kick) this year, while Shah Rukh Khan has blocked one of the most crucial opening weekends of the year with Rohit Shetty's Chennai Express, releasing in theatres on August 9.
While the jury is out on the film's prospects, we take stock of how Eid releases have fared at the box office over the past decade.
Veer Zaara, Aitraaz, Mughal-E-Azam, Naach (2004)
Shah Rukh Khan's Veer Zaara dominated the Eid weekend that year.
The film was a massive success at the box office and maintained his 100 per cent success record with Yash Chopra.
Also successful, though to a lesser extent, was Akshay Kumar's Aitraaz, in which Priyanka Chopra delivered a standout performance.
Abhishek Bachchan's Naach was a major flop.
Garam Masala, Kyun Ki (2005)
Akshay Kumar's Garam Masala totally eclipsed Salman Khan’s Kyun Ki (yes, this really happened!).
Ironically, both films were directed by Priyadarshan.
The Akshay-John combo worked big time for the comedy even though its three leading ladies were newcomers.
The super combo of Salman-Kareena, though, failed owing to a depressing theme and a very sad ending.
Don, Jaan-E-Mann (2006)
When Shah Rukh Khan returned on Eid with Don, he promised to “destroy” the competition.
Don totally crushed Jaan-E-Mann, starring previous year's rivals Akshay Kumar and Salman Khan.
Bhool Bhulaiyaa, Laaga Chunari Mein Daag (2007)
Akshay Kumar struck gold in 2007 with Bhool Bhulaiyaa, directed by Priyadarshan. The horror-comedy saw a terrific performance by Vidya Balan.
Rani Mukerji faced a major setback with Laaga Chunari Mein Daag, which was as regressive as it can get. Abhishek Bachchan suffered another failure as leading man.
Drona, Kidnap (2008)
Abhishek Bachchan’s big ticket superhero flick Drona, his costliest film till then, was a major dud at the box office and was panned by critics too.
Imran Khan and Sanjay Dutt's Kidnap opened better but couldn't sustain.
This was a rare Eid that ended sans any celebrations.
Wanted, Dil Bole Hadippa (2009)
Salman Khan returned with an Eid release after two years.
Wanted didn't exactly break box office records on its first day but as the word spread, it consolidated its position significantly.
The film proved to be a new lease of life for Salman's career.
Rani Mukerji’s second Eid attempt, Dil Bole Hadippa (with Shahid Kapoor) managed to break even.
Wanted paved the way and Dabangg carried Salman's winning streak forward.
The film opened to a record start and cemented Salman’s position as the biggest star in the industry.
The film marked Sonakshi Sinha's successful debut and Arbaaz Khan's debut as a producer.
Despite not being as much appreciated as Dabangg or Wanted, Bodyguard still managed to turn into Salman's biggest film to date.
Kareena Kapoor too finally had a hit with the actor after the Kyunki fiasco.
Remake of Malayalam film of the same name, Bodyguard has a record Eid opening and became the first ever Bollywood film to register a collection of Rs 100 crore during an extended nine-day weekend.
Ek Tha Tiger (2012)
Salman Khan had proved that he was invincible.
The reviews this time were even less encouraging than Bodyguard but the aam janta didn’t care -- they just wanted to watch their favourite hero in action.
The film went on to create further records for the opening weekend and came quite close to besting Aamir Khan’s top grossing 3 Idiots.
Chennai Express (2013)
This year Salman Khan volunteered not to release a film on Eid even though Mental was reportedly meant for an Eid release.
Even Akshay Kumar starrer Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai Dobaara, slated to arrive on Eid, has been moved ahead by a week hence giving a clear field to Chennai Express, Shah Rukh’s first Eid release since Don (2006).