JAPAN: Just when the release date for Salman Khan – Katrina Kaif starrer ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ was fixed for April 20 in Japan, Shah Rukh Khan’s ‘Om Shanti Om’ in what appears to be a hasty business move, was immediately fixed for release on March 16.
The nation-wide release of Salman Khan – Katrina Kaif starrer ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ was meant to mark the opening up of the hitherto dormant Japanese market for Bollywood.
A few days after the premier of Yash Raj’s Salman Khan starrer ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, Eros International announced the Japanese release of their 2007 Shah Rukh Khan blockbuster, ‘Om Shanti On’, entitled ‘Koi Suru Rinne Om Shanti Om in Japan, with Japanese subtitles.
However, Eros International claims that their hasty release of ‘Om Shanti Om’ has nothing to do with YRF’s carefully planned Japanese release for Salman Khan starrer ‘Ek Tha Tiger’.
A source close to both the actors said, the overnight decision to release ‘Om Shanti Om’ was essentially made to make sure Shah Rukh Khan’s movie released in the Japanese market before Salman Khan’s movie.
As per the source, “Where and when did Japan come into the picture? When Yash Raj took the initiative by flying Kabir Khan to Japan to open up the Bollywood market in the country with ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, Eros immediately planned a rush-release of ‘Om Shanti Om’. Why a seven-year old film now? Two reasons. One, because reincarnation is a big high for the Japanese. And two, because a Shah Rukh Khan starrer needed to enter the market before Salman Khan’s Ek Tha Tiger.”
Eros insists that Bollywood and Shah Rukh Khan have “cult following” in Japan, although director of Salman Khan-starrer ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ Kabir Khan who recently toured Japan, confirms that Japan is new to Bollywood