It’s a golden time for Indian cinema. Baahubali 2 has become the first Indian movie to cross Rs 1000 crore at the global box office, while also taking the number 2 position there, beating the likes of Fast and Furious 8 and The Circle. Meanwhile, Dangal has become the highest grossing Indian movie in China, having already amassed more than Rs 350 crore at the Chinese box office there. It even beat Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 at the box office, which in itself is a great achievement. According to certain reports, only 34 such films can release there and 90 per cent of it is claimed by Hollywood films. And yet, Dangal managed to get so many screens, and do so much business! Interestingly, Aamir Khan beat his own movie, PK, to become the highest grossing movie in China.
It’s really strange to see that Bollywood movies are finding so much acceptance in Pakistan and China, two of India’s biggest political rivals. This shows that art and culture really have no boundaries and that we should use them more in maintaining cordial relationships in these times of global insecurity. And China seems to be loving anything Aamir Khan has to offer them. Here are five reasons why Dangal is on a roll in China:
China loves Aamir Khan
It’s a fact – Chinese viewers love Aamir Khan. Be it 3 Idiots, PK and now Dangal – all have been huge hits in the country. If you notice, all these movies deal with social issues that are common to both China and India – stringent education system, religious malpractices and gender equality – and they all are entertaining as well. So for China, just like India, Aamir Khan rocks! BTW, did you know the Chinese have an affectionate nickname for Aamir? It’s Uncle Khan!
Addressing gender equality, a prime problem in China
You won’t believe it, but China is also a patriarchal society just like India, and even the country, though technologically advanced, has problems with gender equality with preference given to boys over girls. Dangal talks about female empowerment, about how girls can shine well in a man’s game. So, naturally, this premise has struck a chord with the Chinese audience, with many viewers even tweeting about how the movie made them emotional.
Promotions – the key strategy and endorsements from Chinese celebs
Aamir Khan is a marketing genius, there is no doubt about that. Knowing the potential of business he can do in China with Dangal, he and his team were in the country for a week to promote the movie. They went to Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu, talking to the audience and getting Dangal noticed as best as they can. This helped in Dangal getting 7000 plus screens, even when Wanda, a major theatre chain refused to screen the movie to promote local cinema. Aamir Khan even roped in Chinese actress Liu Yifei to promote the movie. Furthermore, even other celebs came out and endorsed Dangal, like actor Deng Chao posted a message on the Chinese Twitter-equivalent, Sina Weibo, telling fans to watch it.
The classic tale of the underdog
Who doesn’t love the classic tale of the underdog winning big over the Goliaths? Even though such plots are more than often predictable, we still have a soft corner for such tales, and so do the Chinese. Aamir’s last three blockbusters in China – 3 Idiots, PK and Dangal – are all classic tales of underdogs taking on the big fishes in their fields. So now you know how to impress China with your movies!
Sports and martial arts movies have been always China’s weakness
China loves martial arts movies. Some of its biggest hits were movies like Kung Fu Yoga, The Monkey King series and IP man franchise. Though Dangal is not exactly a martial arts drama, wrestling does form the backdrop of the plot. Plus, it’s a sports movie too, another favourite genre of China.
On the other hand, the below-expectations collections of Guardians of The Galaxy shows that China is tired of the superhero movie boom that is happening now. Also there is the fact that it is not as fab as the original.
Anyway, we congratulate Aamir Khan and the entire Dangal team for making the film such a global success!
Now over to you, Salman Khan and Tubelight!