'RA.One' most widely released Bollywood film

Shah Rukh Khan has been hard-selling his big Diwali release 'RA.One'. If reports are to be believed then he has almost Rs 200 crore at stake. But will the pre-release buzz promise to bring the audience to the theatres?

Travelling across the country and tying up with about 20 brands, which alone amounts to about Rs 52 crore, Shah Rukh Khan has naturally been doing his best to ensure that his Rs 150 crore magnum opus 'Ra One' sets the cash registers ringing this Diwali.

A reason why, 'Ra One' will be hitting across 400 screens overseas and 3000 screens in India of which about 500 theatres will be screening its 3D version. And if reports are to be believed then Ra One boasts of about 3,500 special effects shots, while James Cameron's Avatar had only 2700.

Looks like SRK has done all the calculations. After all, this is the most widely released Bollywood film and its satellite rights have already fetched a whopping Rs 35 crore. It is also the first Bollywood film to have launched its own game console with PlayStation. And not to forget, the 'RA.One' merchandise including these dolls.

Interestingly, 'Ra One' is not be having a Mumbai premiere, instead the film be having its world premieres in Dubai and London. But the time will tell if 'RA.One' can match the strength of 'Bodyguard' which collected Rs 21 crore on its opening day itself.


'RA.One' continues a trend initiated by Krrish and Enthiran. Superhero flicks are relatively new to Indian cinemaspace. It remains to be seen if audiences are receptive to the mega-film that boasts of world class VFX and graphics. RA.One is being billed as a technological masterpiece and is dubbed into Telugu, Tamil and German as well.

On a day the South will see the two mega releases of '7 Aam Arivu' and 'Velayudham', Khan has made sure his 'RA.One' is well ahead in the race for the Box Office top slot with a brilliant casting coup. Southern megastar Rajinikanth plays a cameo in the film, cementing the support of millions of his fans.

Arjun Rampal plays the title role of 'RA.One', an anti-hero out to destroy humanity in the film directed by Anubhav Sinha. Khan's movie will enter the non-traditional markets of South Korea and Hong Kong. On 500 screens, it will be in the 3D format.

Initial response to film

Filmmaker Karan Johar gave big thumbs up to the film and the initial response pouring in from film fraternity has been largely positive.

Giant leap for Bollywood technology

'RA.One' reportedly has 3,500 VFX shots and SRK collaborated with Jeffrey Kleiser, co-founder of US-based Synthesian Studios, to supervise the work done by the Indian film star's RedchilliesVFX team.

The film is being released in more than 3,000 screens in the domestic market in 2D and around 500 screens in 3D. Sinha and Khan watched as many as 200 superhero films in multiple languages from all over the world before making 'RA.One'.

Khan has roped in Oscar winner Resul Pookutty for the special sound effects. The team went to Los Angeles get the sound effects done for the film. Jeff Kleiser of 1994 Hollywood film "Stargate" was hired as the supervisor of visual effects.

Nicola Pecorini of 'Loathing in Las Vegas' fame is the director of photography, while the film is edited by Academy-award winner Martin Walsh.

It has 3,500 VFX shots, which could mark a new beginning for the use of the technology in Indian films. The task of adding special effects was outsourced to multiple specialty studios including in London, Paris and Bangkok, as also in the US. Dolby surround 7.1 system has been installed in several multiplexes in the run-up to the sci-fi's release.

Chinese actor Jackie Chan was reportedly approached for a role in the film and later Chinese-American actor Tom Wu was signed on to be a part of the film. The G.One suit that Khan wears in the film is made of silicon, styrofoam and rubber and is said to be considerably heavy. SRK said he lost 5 kgs after shooting in the superhero suit.

Khan had to don prosthetic make up for 8 to 10 hours a day without a break which made it difficult for him to even eat and drink.

Music of 'RA.One'

Khan roped in international singer Akon for two songs - "Chammak Challo" and "Criminal" - and both of them are a rage. The Dildara ballad is also popular among youngsters. The music launch of 'RA.One' was streamed live on a video-sharing site for an undisclosed amount.

The most promoted film ever?

The event's telecast rights are believed to have been sold to the TV channel for a Rs 10 crore. Satellite rights of the film have reportedly been sold for Rs 35 crore, while distribution rights have been sold for Rs 77 crore.

The first trailer was aired during the World Cup and later came tie-ups with Champions League T20, UTV Indiagames for online games and iPhone/iPad application for fans, Sony Playstation for video games, Google Plus and Seventymm, a leading DVD rental company for merchandising, as well as with Homeshop18 to sell superhero film merchandise and Youtube.

The G.One online store is selling merchandise related to the film. In past one month, the film's promotion saw an all time high with Shah Rukh's eight-city tour to create awareness about it, his back-to-back appearances on the finales of reality shows "India's Got Talent", "Just Dance" and "Sa Re Ga Ma Li'l Champs" as well as occupying the hot seat on "Kaun Banega Crorepati".

Now all eyes are on the box office collection of the movie and trade pundits say it will have to gross Rs 200 crore to break even.

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