Everybody and his cousin is talking about the euphoria surrounding Pathaan. The plans opened on Friday and by the end of the fifth day, more than 5.25 lakh tickets of the film had already been sold. This is the highest number for a Hindi film. If dubbed Hindi films are also considered, it is next only to Bahubali 2: The Conclusion. Pathaan overtook the Hindi dubbed version of K.G.F. Chapter 2 as far as advance booking is concerned, only a couple of hours back. The Kannada film’s Hindi dubbed version had sold 5.15 lakh tickets in advance when it was released in April last year.

No doubt, the plans for Pathaan are filling faster in areas where there’s a sizeable Muslim population than in the other areas, especially in the case of multiplexes. But the following is what would emerge if one tries to analyse the madness in the cinema halls even before the film is out there for the public to pass its judgement:

  1. Shah Rukh Khan’s long absence from the scene seems to have benefitted Pathaan. People appear to be very keen to watch him in action on the big screen after so long.
  2. The ‘Boycott Pathaan‘ gang, however minuscule it may have been (have been because, one supposes, the gang is disbanded by now as they have no face to even look at themselves in the mirror), seems to have worked cent per cent in the film’s favour. This is because a huge sympathy wave has built up in favour of Shah Rukh Khan. People feel, the star has been victimised from all sides by the powers that be as they did not bother to take action against those who vandalised cinemas and threatened cinema owners with dire consequences if they “dared to screen the film”. Hundreds and thousands of people are planning to watch Pathaan in solidarity with Khan even though they are self-admittedly not fans of Shah Rukh Khan. This kind of solidarity is almost unprecedented in the annals of the film industry. People also feel, the Khan was wronged when his son, Aryan Khan, was arrested in the cruise drugs bust case in October last year although no drug was found on his person.
  3. The trailer of the film was liked by the potential audience. And those who did not like it, loved it!
  4. The controversial Besharam rang song from the film, which seemed to have raised the hackles of those demanding a ban on the song and the film, has become a rage with the masses and classes alike.

An exciting trailer of a film and a hit song in it are a sure sign that the film will open big. In the case of Pathaan, not only have the two aforesaid conditions been fulfilled but additionally, the controversy has tilted the scales in favour of the film by prompting people to come out in large numbers in its support.