The Past Blast: Amitabh Bachchan, the megastar with over 90 successful films at the box office and counting…

by Asif Ali
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The biggest megastar of Indian cinema, Amitabh Bachchan brought in his 80th birthday today, October 11. Having acted in over 155 films, the Big B has continued his stint as a leading man in the Hindi film industry for over 6 decades now, and he is still a force to reckon with. He is going stronger than ever before with some of the most promising films under his kitty – from Sooraj Barjatya’s Uunchai to Nag Ashwin’s Project k, Ayan Mukerji’s Brahmastra, and Vikas Bahl’s Goodbye among others. 

Through his six-decade stint, The Big B has featured in over 50 films which have been bestowed with the verdict of hit or above at the box office. There are at least 40 more films that have proved to be successful bets at the ticket window doing average to above-average business. However, a point to be noted here rests in the fact that an average film of Bachchan in the 70s, 80s, and even early 90s, entailed more footfalls i.e. sold more tickets than the majority of the hits and super-hits in today’s time. 

His dominance at the box office has been spoken about time and again, however, he is certainly among the actors with the longest career ever in the Hindi Film industry. While another megastar, Dharmendra, has been doing feature films, he has not been as regular and as consistent as the Big B when it comes to making an appearance on the big screen. It has been 18,967 days since the release of Saat Hindustani, and Bachchan is continuing to carry films on his mighty shoulders and deliver hit films even today. The first hit of his career was the 1971 Hrishikesh Mukherjee directed Anand, followed by Bombay To Goa. While the two films got him the much-needed recognition in the industry, it was Zanjeer who consolidated his image as the angry young man of Bollywood and started his path of scaling heights that none imagined before.

The biggest blockbusters of Bachchan’s career include Deewaar, Sholay, Amar Akbar Anthony, Muqaddar Ka Sikandar, Naseeb, Laawaris, Coolie, Suhaag, Mard, Mohabbatein, and Kabhie Khushi Kabhie Gham among others. Through the 70s and 80s, the popularity of Bachchan was so high that renowned publishers, India Book House Pvt. Ltd. Had come up with a comic series called ‘The Adventure of Amitabh Bachchan’, which featured the megastar himself as a superstar, who also happened to be a superhero. But obviously, the comic book series was supremely successful, and the publishers often faced pressures of matching their supplies with demand. 

Ever since the release of Zanjeer, there have been very few instances when an Amitabh Bachchan film failed to take a good start at the box office. Irrespective of the film’s merit, an Amitabh Bachchan film meant housefull boards at the cinema halls in the opening week. It’s only after the initial euphoria set down that the actual word of mouth of the film came into play. Bachchan is certainly the superstar with maximum bumper openers in the Hindi film industry and this is just one among the countless other records he has under his name.

He is not just the great superstar of Hindi cinema, but also the greatest actor with an impeccable track record at the box office. Despite having acted in over 155 films i.e., having a large volume of films in his kitty, Bachchan commands a hit ratio of 32% and a success ratio of 59%. It suggests that 59% of the films that the Big B has acted in to date has proved to be successful at the box office, whereas 33% have been hits or better. And this is sheerly an extraordinary track record. 

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