Yash Raj Films’ Bollywood blockbuster “Pathaan,” headlined by superstar Shah Rukh Khan, is set for a historic theatrical release in Bangladesh, Variety has confirmed.
Hindi-language Bollywood films, while very popular in the country, have not been released in Bangladesh since the country’s formation in 1971, in a bid to protect the country’s local film industry. In 2009, the decision was relaxed to allow “Wanted,” starring Salman Khan, to open in the territory. However, the release was met with protests led by a local film industry organization and the film was pulled from the 50 cinemas it was running in after a week.
In February this year, a consortium of 19 Bangladesh film associations decided to allow Hindi-language films to release in the country and suggested that 10 films release a year. “Pathaan” then will become the first Hindi-language film to enjoy a wide release in Bangladesh.
“Pathaan” is part of Yash Raj Films’ spy universe and also stars Deepika Padukone and John Abraham. It released in January and quickly attained blockbuster status. With a worldwide gross of $130 million, it is the fifth highest grossing Indian film of all time and the second highest Hindi-language film after “Dangal” (2016), starring Aamir Khan, which collected $311 million and is atop the all-time list.
Nelson D’Souza, VP, international distribution, at Yash Raj Films, said: “Cinema has always been a unifying force between nations, races and cultures. It transcends borders, galvanizes people and plays a significant hand in bringing people together. We are incredibly thrilled that ‘Pathaan,’ which has done historic business worldwide, will now get a chance to entertain audiences in Bangladesh.”
“Pathaan” will release across Bangladesh on May 12.
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