Sticking to one image is doom. Salman Khan realised it very early. The only thing he is managing is the larger than life characters/treatment as Tubelight opened his eyes on how exactly audience want to see him.
His way of signing the films have been pretty clear. 2010 - 2014, he let the makers encash on his giant megastardom & also did movies with his family+friends. The result was Ready, Bodyguard, Dabangg 2, Jai Ho & Kick. Not keeping ETT in the same list only because YRF milked his stardom & even he got to work with the biggest production house.
Come 2015, Bajrangi Bhaijaan changed all the equation. Salman Khan films weren't just entertainers anymore. That gave him courage to sign on a Rajshri film which was an attempt to bring back their old glory. And the bigger courage in challenging himself with Sultan the next year. It was clear, he just didn't wanted to hold onto action image only. The hard earned megastardom can't survive only with one image. Bajrangi Bhaijaan proved that to him.
This is what led to him try out Tubelight. The same mistakes as in PRDP continued. Rather than sticking to their instinct, Salman forced the makers to repeat their previous narration as it is. While PRDP aped HAHK & HSSH, Tubelight tried miserably to ape Bajrangi Bhaijaan. While this superstition worked for Dabangg 2 with PRDP just about getting saved, Tubelight paid the heavy price.
And we know this led to him signing wipes tears Race 3, where he solely signed it for fans & in the meantime renew few actors career. The incompetent director, half baked script & incapability to handle a huge megastar + ofcourse Megastar's lesser confidence in risking his on screen image of a good guy resulted in a masterpiece. Again skipping TZH because it posed zero challenge for Salman & it was pretty easy for him to score at the box office with it. Bharat atleast thankful he tried. With the current nation's scenario, they dared to be honest to their source material & screenplay. In a way coming after a masterpiece like Race 3, glad he did Bharat. The over use of humor played spoilsport but then the script in hand demanded that.
Good that he is breaking the shackle with Inshallah. And he has balanced it excellently by placing Dabangg 3 in between his two EID biggies. They will get the Salman they demand to see this Christmas. That'll help him open up for one genre he hasn't fully tried for an entire decade. Then he will follow it up with another entertainer. With his current phase, this is the only for him to choose films. There is no competition among seniors anymore. It is with the juniors. The generations will come into play. Afterall it's just wait & see game.