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The box office is open for Eid!

Eid holidays are around the corner and having spent a month of religious sobriety, there’s no better way to unleash the fun times than watching your favourite movie in a chilled environment

The box office is open for Eid!

Eid holidays are around the corner and having spent a month of religious sobriety, there’s no better way to unleash the fun times than watching your favourite movie in a chilled environment over some buttery buckets of popcorn.

Eid is around the corner and lucky for us cine-goers in the country around six big releases will be rolling in with the monsoon clouds. We predict that audiences will be in a fix over which films to watch since ticket prices are at a premium and there’s just so much cine-magic that Eidee will buy! Here’s a precap of what will be coming and running in cinemas over the next ten days, what to watch and what to avoid. Read on…

Bollywood star Aamir Khan once said that people decide to watch his films after accessing the trailer whereas all a Salman Khan fan needs is the release date; just a date of release will send Salman Khan fans queuing up at the box office for pre-booking. The bad boy of Bollywood is back this Eid with Sultan where he plays a washed out wrestler who makes a comeback to redeem his pride. Written and directed by Ali Abbas Zafar (Mere Brother Ki Dulhan, Ghunday) and produced by Yash Raj Films (who also produced Ek Tha Tiger), Sultan is likely to dominate the box office this Eid. The shows were nearly all pre-booked and some of them were even sold out! Such is the magic of Sallu bhai. Last Eid, Salman Khan’s Bajrangi Bhaijan made box office history and Sultan may not have such a phenomenal impact but it will be a hit, especially since he has been paired with Anushka Sharma for the very first time. The trailer of the film, as well as a few of its songs, is already making waves on both sides of the border and one wishes this Salman Khan-starrer all the best.

Films like Nagesh Kukunoor’s Dhanak (June 17), Abhishek Chaubay’s Udta Punjab (June 24) and Anurag Kashyap’s Raman Raghav 2.0 (released on June 24) are likely to keep cinemas busy till chand raat; whichever film remains in demand will join the Eid releases and my bet is on Dhanak, possibly one of the most beautiful films made in recent years. The other two flicks are made for a niche audience, one that may not want to subject themselves to gruesome scenes and censored dialogues, that too on Eid, which tends to be family time!

Locally, Sawal 700 Crore Dollar Ka is no longer releasing over the Eid weekend but it is also on the cards and will make its mark upon release. Just as the name suggests, the movie is a heist flick, the trailer of which has been doing the rounds for some time. On one hand there is the pairing of Jawed Sheikh and Ghulam Mohiuddin after 18 years (they have done two dozen films together) and on the other hand we have Shamoon Abbasi playing a good guy for a change. Ghulam Mohiuddin and TV actress Munawwar Sultana’s son Ali Mohiuddin will be making his debut as leading man through the movie whereas newcomer Ainy will play his love interest. The trailer suggests that the storyline will be on the lines of Bollywood’s successful Dhoom franchise where Ali will don disguises (like Hrithik Roshan in Dhoom 2); there will be car chases, underwater sequences and death defying stunts inspired from Hollywood movies. Director Jamshed Jan Mohammad hopes to continue his father (late) Jan Mohammad’s legacy forward who had delivered countless hits in the ’70s and the ’80s.

Ali Mohiuddin also wants to make a name for himself in showbiz and that’s why he chose to act in this flick. “I have always been fascinated with showbiz since both my parents are actors,” Ali spoke about his decision to act. “After completing my education in England – I am a part qualified accountant – I came to Pakistan and was approached by director Jamshed Jan Mohammad for a role in his upcoming film. Half way through the narration I said yes to his offer and decided to give showbiz a try. I am glad that I would be appearing in the film alongside my father Ghulam Mohiuddin and veteran actor Jawed Sheikh and hope that the audience will love this movie.”

Another film that was supposed to get an Eid release – Blind Love – has been postponed till July 29 and no reason has been given for the delay but when you have a film as big as Sultan as competition, producers are bound to get cold feet. Blind Love features Aamir Qureshi, Mathira with a few fresh actors, has been directed by Faisal Bukhari and has been scripted by veteran writer/director Pervez Kaleem. Sadly, besides a few interesting shots and dialogues (mostly by Mustafa Qureshi’s son), the film has a dated look and seems like it belongs in the ‘90s.

When asked about his return to films (after Bhai Log in 2010, also by the same director), Aamir Qureshi had a lot to say. “The moment I read the script of Blind Love, I wanted to play the negative role since it provides me with a challenge. I am not the lovey dovey hero kind of guy, nor am I an evil person but when you portray something challenging, you end up enjoying the task. As for the film, it’s an all-out commercial flick and will entertain the audience. Hopefully it will also contribute towards the revival of commercial cinema in the country.”

And then there is The Legend of Tarzan, one of the finest stories ever, revisited. What makes this version something to look forward to is the star cast – Christopher Waltz, Samuel L. Jackson, Margot Robbie, John Hurt and Alexander Skarsgård as Tarzan. David Yates, who became a world-famous director through Harry Potter films, calls the shots in what can be termed as one of the most anticipated flicks of the year. This may not be the first time Edgar Rice Burrows’ character makes it to the cinema but it will be the first instance the audience would see him in action in 3D! In order to make its release grand, the distributors have decided to release the film on Eid Day, delaying its release in the country by one whole week.

findiDue to less attendance in cinemas during the Holy month of Ramazan, the distributors also delayed the release of Finding Dory (by one month). The sequel to Finding Nemo has broken all records worldwide and is likely to reflect that box office magic in Pakistan as well. With kids on holidays and their parents out to meet relatives, sending them to the cinema might be the best option considering they are watching what the whole world has loved – that too on 3D! Don’t be late for the journey that takes the forgetful Dory to new places, with friends in tow, trying to engineer an escapade just as they did in the first installment 13 years ago!

Ice Age 5: Collision Course will also return with Manny, Sid, Diego, Buck and Ellie, who will once again have to be on their toes as the world they live in is about to come to an end. The extremely popular franchise’s latest installment is supposed to hit the screens worldwide on July 22 but that would be too late for the anxious kids and their worrying parents, wouldn’t it? That’s why the film will grace the screen in 3D on Eid day … and yes, fans of the franchise would be looking forward to the many failures of Scrat, the saber tooth squirrel who is obsessed with collecting acorns and whatever bad happens, happens because of him!

Last but not the least, The Secret Life of Pets will also be screened in Pakistan on Eid Day – same day worldwide release – and kids will have a great time watching pets talk, fight and lookout for each other. The release of three animated films will mean that the kids will have a difficult time to select which flick to watch first and which to skip (and which films to spend their Eidee on); the abundance of movies will however be good for local cinema business which needs such holidays, big time!

Bollywood

Sultan

Hollywood

The Legend of Tarzan

Animated Films

Finding Dory

The Secret Life of Pets

Ice Age 5: Collision Course

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