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Karan Johar criticizes rising star fees in Bollywood


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Filmmaker Karan Johar has criticized the rising fees demanded by movie stars, stating that many are not in touch with reality. He made these comments while discussing the debate around star remuneration in Bollywood, particularly in light of the recent poor performance of big-ticket Hindi films.

Johar noted that the escalating costs of filmmaking, driven by inflation and hefty star fees, have become unsustainable. “There are about ten viable actors in Hindi cinema, and they are all asking for the sun, moon, and earth. So, you pay them. Then you pay for the film and the marketing expenditure. And then your film does not do the numbers… How’s that math working?” he said.

Reflecting on industry trends, Johar pointed out that each decade of Hindi cinema had a distinct style, but now filmmakers are chasing trends without conviction. “If an action movie like Jawan or Pathaan works, everyone jumps on the action bandwagon. Then a love story succeeds, and the same thing happens. We are running around like headless chickens,” he remarked.

The filmmaker also discussed the importance of catering to audiences in Tier 2 cities and smaller towns, criticizing the focus on urban-centric films. “Audiences don’t want alienating cinema. When you focus on urban themes and neglect Tier 2 cities and smaller towns, you miss out on massive business. Urban cinema can succeed, but only at a certain price,” Johar said.

Karan Johar’s latest production venture, Kill, is currently in cinemas.


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