Rewind - Forty Years Of Historic Blockbuster KRANTI
Saturday 13 February 2021 15.00 IST
Box Office India Trade Network
Kranti released 40 years ago on this date and remains one of the greatest films in Hindi cinema where the audience went mad over the film from the very first show and then the film went on to create history. Kranti was about a revolutionary farmers oath to take on the British Raj told in an epic way with almost perfect storytelling for the Indian audience which struck a chord and how. It was also backed up with blockbuster music and heart wrenching emotions and all this puts it among the top ten films ever of Hindi cinema. Kranti is no doubt the biggest patriotic film ever seen in India with Gadar - Ek Prem Katha being next best.
The film released on 13th February 1981 in Mumbai, Delhi / UP, East Punjab, CP Berar, CI and Rajasthan to packed houses with a struggle to find tickets for weeks. The film then released in South a couple of weeks later while it made its entry into West Bengal and Bihar in April to an extraordinary response.
The film had a hust cast featuring Dilip Kumar, Manoj Kumar, Shashi Kapoor, Hema Malini, Shatrughan Sinha and Parveen Babi among others and was directed by Manoj Kumar who had four huge HITS to his credit but Kranti was set to go to another level compared to his earlier films.
At the time of release it was the fastest earner of all time setting first run records in practically all circuits barring Mumbai and South. It was the second highest grossing film ever behind Sholay but that is because no film could come close to the repeat run business of Sholay and nor will any film be able to. Kranti had higher business than Sholay if we count first run only.
If we look at it in terms of business today the film may well be showing a number of over 600 crore nett or even 700 crore nett. It celebrated a silver jubilee in 26 centres and even in places like Mirzapur (UP) and Jungadh (Gujarat) where jubilees were very rare. There are hardly ten films in history that have celebrated jubilees in over 25 centres.
The craze of the film was such that in places like Delhi, Rajasthan, UP and Haryana there were shops selling Kranti T shirts, jackets, vests and even underwear. The year 1981 was a big one for the industry which saw some huge BLOCKBUSTERS like Naseeb, Laawaris, Ek Duje Ke Liye, Love Story and Meri Awaaz Suno and many other HITS but Kranti stood apart and top of the pile.
The film in Delhi / UP was so huge that it released with 24 prints and within a few weeks you would except some of these prints going down into smaller centres for monetisation but even after ten weeks of release it had only hit Delhi city and 19 towns and cities of UP and still over 100 towns and cities to go which had cinemas. The collections in all major centres of UP were just refusing to drop week after week. The collections after ten weeks in places like Agra, Gorakhpur and Varanasi were stll competing with new releases. The first ten week figures in Delhi / UP are as follows.
Week One - 15,01,254
Week Two - 14,93,362
Week Three - 14,35,710
Week Four - 14,08,561
Week Five - 12,14,008
Week Six - 12,01,502
Week Seven - 11,05,223
Week Eight - 11,39,816
Week Nine - 10,78,713
Week Ten - 10,10,027
TOTAL - 1,25,88,176 (10 weeks)
Kranti grossed 1.25 crore nett in Delhi / UP in ten weeks and then went on to do over 3 crore nett in its full run and before Hum Aapke Hain Kaun came in 1994 there were only three films in history to cross 3 crore nett in Delhi / UP and they were Sholay (1975), Kranti (1981) and Mard (1985).