Thursday, 7 March 2013

Shah Rukh Khan queers Salman Khan’s Eid pitch

Shah Rukh Khan queers Salman Khan’s Eid pitch
Get ready for Eid, he says to the Chennai Express team at a meeting of stakeholders in Wai. Is Sallu listening?

It's official now. Shah Rukh Khan has staked his claim to the most coveted release date of the film calendar, which has been monopolised by Salman Khan so far. Chennai Express will be flagged off on the day of Eid, on August 8. This is the first time in years that SRK will release his film on the auspicious day that has seen Sallu storm the box office with Wanted, Bodyguard, Dabangg and Ek Tha Tiger.

With SRK traditionally dominating the Diwali slot, it was an unwritten code between the two stars that one will not eye the other's favourite time of the year. But trust SRK to throw caution to the wind.

The date for Chennai Express was finalised at a meeting held in Wai yesterday. TOI has learnt that Shah Rukh, who has been camping there for weeks now, called the various stakeholders to the set.

Among them were distributors, members of the production house, Rohit Shetty, Farah Khan, who has choreographed a song for the film, and music directors Vishal-Shekhar.

"Interesting thing about the conclave was, one did not know about the others who had been summoned," said a source. SRK, who was in a jubilant mood, broke the news to all present. "Get ready for Eid!" he reportedly said, to whoops of delight.

That Chennai Express would eventually release on Eid, had become increasingly apparent over the past few weeks. Salman's Sher Khan, announced as an Eid release, was shelved. His Mental is unlikely to get ready by that time. Bhansali wisely moved Ram Leela away from the collision course, to avoid a repeat of the OSO Saawariya story. That kept the slot open for Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai -2. Now that's hardly competition.

It remains to be seen if Salman's luck rubs off on his arch rival.