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When Box Office Failed Shahrukh Khan!

Many a times, we accuse King Khan of not experimenting much with his roles, and sticking to Raj-Rahul characters that made him the icon that he is today. But what we forget is that, he does experiment with his roles, but that doesn’t always result into box office successes.

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Recently, Ram Gopal Varma gave rather insightful comment that SRK is like Kamal Haasan and Salman Khan is like Rajinikanth. And SRK will give away his fans to Salman Khan, like Kamal Haasan did to Rajinikanth, if he continues to do different roles. Though at any other time, we would have totally disagreed with him. Kamal Haasan was an actor who had confidence in his abilities, and loved to do performances where he went beyond what he expected. Rajinikanth, on the other hand, knew his limitations, and worked comfortably around that.

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After the average performance of FAN, we had to agree with RGV at some level. And it’s not SRK’s fault at all. It’s rather the audiences, who might prefer Chennai Express or Happy New Year, or the makers who decided to turn a relatable plot into unrecognisable mess in the second half.

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An established actor giving a flop is not such a huge thing, however, giving a great performance in a film that doesn’t click with the public is far more painful.

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Here are 7 instances when Shah Rukh Khan gave terrific performances, but the box office failed him!

FAN

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Although Fan was much awaited and promoted at large, the average screenplay and confusing direction did not do justice to SRK’s diversified performance, thus, reflecting on the poor box office collections! Though, SRK aced the portrayal of both Aryan Khanna, the superstar and Gaurav, his super crazy fan!

SWADES

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Despite achieving a cult status and having seen SRK’s most natural performance, the audience was not as impressed by the film as they were Ashutosh Gowarikar’s Lagaan! Gowarikar decided to keep Swades much more grounded and intimate than it’s Oscar nominated predecessor! It is still lauded as one of the best films of Bollywood inspite of failing miserably at the box office!

PAHELI

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Had it been a bedtime story, Paheli, with its fairy tale romance, ghosts and magic, it would have been loved! But the audience did not quite accept King Khan in the moustache and turban. Hence, despite SRK’s stellar performances as a nerd and his far more subtle lookalike ghost, the film bombed at the box office.

BILLU

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Before Fan, SRK played a real-life imitation of himself in Priyadarshan’s Billu, a remake of the Malayalam hit Katha Parayumbol and was a modern-day take on Lord Krishna’s friendship with his poor Brahmin friend, Sudama. The film was very light, as any other Priyadarshan film. However, the overzealous promotions failed to inform public that Irrfan Khan was the main lead in the film, while SRK just had an extended guest appearance, which worked against the film. This was sad, since it was one of the best films on friendship, and King Khan’s speech in the end was heart-wrenching!

DIL SE

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Dil Se saw A.R. Rahman at his musical best and had Chaiyya Chaiyya, one of the most iconic song with some very inventive choreography! Also, Mani Ratnam finally made his Bollywood debut with this movie, after the successes of his dubbed ventures Roja and Bombay. However, even though the movie had a huge opening and Shahrukh Khan’s romantic side was at its most intense, the bleak proceedings failed to do justice to his skills!

HEY RAM

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Kamal Haasan may be the hero of the film, while Shah Rukh Khan was just a supporting player, a cameo at best (with 2 scenes and a song). But the film was promoted in Mumbai and northern territories with SRK’s face pasted on posters all over! This kind of deceitful play-off, along with the grim and sometimes stomach-churning narrative (remember Rani Mukerji’s gang rape scene anyone? Shudder!) caused the film to underperform at the box office! However, no one can blame SRK, as he was one of the few redeeming factors of the film, and his death scene is very impactful!

ANJAAM

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Before Anjaam, SRK’s previous bad boy turns in Baazigar and Darr were not completely black, but just various shades of grey. However in Anjaam, he went into full villain mode, starting off as a stalker to Madhuri’s character, to later killing her husband gruesomely, to getting the wife implicated in the crime. Perhaps he went a bit too far, since the film performed averagely at the box office, though he won the Filmfare Best Actor in a Negative role award, something he missed in Darr!

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