There are convictions and there are strong convictions. Having covered and observed the film industry for close to two decades, yours truly is firmly of the view that Rahul Dholakia’s Raees will be a game changer not only for the film industry, but for Shah Rukh Khan as well.
This is a strong belief that struck me right from the day the first look of the film was released. Before Raees, King Khan had an ordinary Dilwale, a disappointing Fan and a critically acclaimed Dear Zindagi. Yes, the box-office has not been set on fire by these films, but if there is one film that would rewrite history it has to be Raees. Let me not get into the nitty-gritty of the hits the trailer of the film has garnered, it’s all about SRK’s look and a look that is hatke in the true sense of the term.
This is perhaps for the first time in ages, that a Shah Rukh film has created such a craze and hype before its release. The Don in SRK has been witnessed in the Don series, but with Raees, the King treads a different territory all together. He is angry, aggressive and has a point to make in the trailer, yet his soft side is in full view when he romances his on-screen sweetheart Mahira Khan. And he does give his fans a glimpse of the lover boy image that has been synonymous with the star. This megastar is looking different and appealing enough.
Time and again, critics have slammed the megastar for going ga-ga over his stardom and killing the actor in him in the process. Yes, Swades and Chak De! India were exceptions, but with Chennai Express, Dilwale and Fan, the Mannat resident once again displayed his obsession with his superstardom at a time when his contemporaries were changing themselves.
We have seen the star power of Shah Rukh, but for years the great actor he is, has given us a miss, but with Raees, he is set for greater glory. And he does have his director Dholakia to thank for this rejuvenation, if I put it this way.
The director of the National Award winning Parzania has not only used the star power in Shah Rukh, but he has also made him exhibit a different facet to his persona if the trailer is to go by. This is exactly the reason, why even the biggest of stars need good directors. Salman Khan had Kabir Khan, Akshay Kumar had Neeraj Pandey, Aamir Khan banked on Raju Hirani and now, SRK after Shamit Amin (Chak De! India) and Ashutosh Gowariker (Swades) has a Dholakia to enable him rediscover himself.
Though, it is too early to predict, Raees is one film that King Khan is heavily banking on, so are his millions of fans. Even a staunch Salman fan is mesmerised at his looks in the film.
Come January 25, 2017, Raees hopefully will create a storm at the box-office despite facing competition from the Hrithik Roshan-starrer Kaabil. When it comes to star power, the Khans still have the edge and nobody better than Shah Rukh Khan knows what it takes to survive in an industry so unpredictable. Yes, Raees will redefine box-office history, mark my words and present to us a gifted actor called Shah Rukh Khan who got relegated to oblivion because of his star power.