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The longer the better

Friday, August 11, 2006
New Delhi (UNI): Longer is beautiful in Bollywood these days, it seems! Westerners may lament about the inordinate length of Bollywood films as the reason for their not making it at the Oscars but the recent trend in Bollywood seems to be more and more towards long films. And with good reason. For, recent evidence suggests that it has been the longer films i.e, three hour or lengthier, that have turned out to be huge blockbusters at the box office. Infact, out of the three blockbusters coming from the stable of Bollywood in the last two months - Kunal Kohli's Fanaa, Neeraj Vora's Phir Hera Pheri and 'Rakesh Roshan's Krrish - two have been either three hours long or lengthier. While Fanaa, at 19 reels was a little longer than three hours, Krrish, at 18 reels, was nearly three hours long.

While Fanaa, starring superstar Aamir Khan and Kajol, turned out to be a stupendous success, earning close to Rs 100 crore in its eight week run till now, Krrish, featuring Hrithik Roshan as India's first superhero, turned out to be the fastest money spinner in the history of Bollywood, having grossed more than Rs 150 crore in just six weeks of its theatrical run, making it the third biggest grosser in Bollywood history after Anil Sharma's Gadar and Sooraj Barjatya's Hum Aapke Hain Kaun.

Before that, Rakyesh Mehra's Rang De Basanti, which turned out to be the first superhit of the year, too was close to three hours long. Joining the ranks of these 'Longish' Bollywood films is Karan Johar's much-awaited Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna. Trade sources reveal that the star-studded film which is, even before its release on August 11, being touted as the next blockbuster of the year what with it having a big star cast comprising superstars Shahrukh Khan and Amitabh Bachchan, the new teenage heartthrob Abhishek Bachchan, the charming Preity Zinta and Rani Mukherjee, is nearly three and a half-hour long.

The sources reveal that Kabhi Alvida na Kehna has a running time of 198 Minutes. The film, which has been granted a UA certificate by the censors, has a length of 5279.42 metres in 22 reels, the sources said. And, going by the tremendous buzz that Kabhi Alvida na Kehna has been creating in film trade circles even before its release, it too seems all set to set cash registers ringing.

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