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Aamir takes over overseas throne

Tuesday, June 06, 2006 

New Delhi (UNI): It seems Aamir Khan has equalled the popularity enjoyed in the overseas market by Shah Rukh Khan. After a stupendous showing of his earlier film Rang De Basanti, Aamir's portrayal of an "intense romantic-cum-terrorist' in Kunal Kohli's Fanaa has wowed audiences in the overseas markets. The much-awaited film from the banner of Yashraj productions took a flying start in the United Kingdom when it opened at the theatres on May 26, trade sources said. The sources said the film figured at number six on the UK box office charts, grossing 413,410 UK Pounds in the first 4 days from 37 screens across the UK.

In the other overseas markets too, the film got an unprecedented opening. For example, in Australia, the film's collections during the opening weekend were 94,700 Dollars which, trade sources said, was the second highest opening ever for an Indian film. Trade sources said the opening garnered by the latest YashRaj venture, which marks the return of Kajol after a long hiatus, is the highest ever opener for an Aamir Khan starrer.

In the United States, the film collected 900,000 dollars in its opening weekend from 72 cinema screens and was at number 13 on the US box office charts. Among other overseas territories, the film garnered 33,000 Dollars in the opening weekend in Kenya, 28,000 dolalrs in South Africa, 25000 Dollars in Fiji, 19000 dollars in Mauritius, 19000 dollars in Hong Kong and 16500 dollars in Holland. Close on the heels of the super success of Aamir's last film, U T V's Rang De Basanti in the overseas market, the outstanding opening of Fanaa in various foreign countries has confirmed Aamir's enormous overseas draw. It has also underlined the fact that his popularity among the overseas audience parallels that of Shahrukh Khan, known as the 'Baadshah of overseas'.

Fanaa has already wowed audiences in India and netted more that Rs 20 crore in the opening week. Thus, the film has almost recovered its cost of about Rs 25 crore since its release on Friday, which is quite commendable since it is not being screened in Gujarat due to Aamir's espousal of the cause of the Narmada Bachao Andolan. Analysts say the film's stupendous opening was largely due to the huge level of curiosity among audiences for the first time pairing of Aamir and Kajol. Further, many cinegoers were looking forward to watching kajol on screen for the first time after a four-year sabbatical. In fact, critics have been effusive in their praise for the the brilliant performances of both Kajol and Aamir in the film. Both critics and audiences are all calling 'Fanaa' yet another landmark film in the remarkable and enviable repertoire of YashRaj Films.

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