‘Chennai Express’ Vs ‘OUATIMD’: A Political Resolution

Post the controversy that MNS issued threats to disrupt the release of ‘Chennai Express’ looks like all is well between Shah Rukh Khan and the MNS. They seem to have reached an amicable solution over the release of ‘Chennai Express’. But there’s more to the story.

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MUMBAI: It was reported yesterday that MNS workers have threatened to disrupt the release of Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Chennai Express’ (Read Story). This was because the makers of ‘Chennai Express’ were apparently demanding more single-screen share and in the process elbowing out on Marathi film ‘Duniyadari’. 

This hadn’t quite gone down well with MNS activists. But after a quick meeting between Rohit Shetty and  MNS Chief Raj Thackeray, things seem to have been amicably resolved.

However, buzz is that there is more to this threat and resolution of threat story, and that the objection against ‘Chennai Express’ taking up more screen time did not come overnight. Apparently it began at a time when both ‘Chennai Express’ and ‘Once Upon A Time In Mumbai Dobaara’ were eyeing the same 8 August Eid slot.

While the ‘OUATIMD’ team had changed their release date to avoid the clash, it seems they were unhappy about it. Jeetendra, Ramesh Sippy (handling distribution for Balaji Motion Pictures) had met the MNS chief and asked to end the release fiasco. Thus, calls were sent to both camps. Since Shah Rukh Khan wasn’t ready to budge, the release of ‘Once Upon A Time In Dobaara’ was shifted by a week, with the assurance that it will be given more screens.

Says Ameya Khopkar, President Maharashtra Navnirman Chitrapat Karamchari Sena (film wing), “Jeetendra-ji and Ramesh Sippy met us a couple of months back, requesting us to help them solve the issue of the box-office clash. After much discussion and deliberation, we managed to work out on a strategy. Jeetendra-ji decided to shift the film by a week and we ensured his film got enough screens.”

With ‘Chennai Express’ getting it’s due of releasing on the agreed date 9August (now) (earlier 8 August), they have come to an agreement with MNS over ‘Duniyadari’. The Marathi film is currently running to packed houses and the ‘Chennai Express’ team, Shah Rukh Khan just felt it right to settle the difference amicably.

Rohit Shetty met MNS Chief Raj Thackeray and now has agreed to do-away with a chunk of single-screen owing to success of ‘Duniyadari’.

All’s well that ends well!

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