Upala KBR (DNA; May 3, 2017)

S S Rajamouli’s Baahubali 2 is being labelled the greatest Hindi film ever. It’s said to have replaced Sholay from that position.

We asked Sholay director Ramesh Sippy what he thinks of the ongoing discussion. He says, “How will I say Baahubali 2 is the greatest Indian movie ever without watching it? I haven’t been able to watch Baahubali 2 as yet as I couldn’t get a ticket. In any case, Sholay is a 42-year-old film, and those times were different. It’s heartening to see the film doing such great business, but I don’t know how comparisons work. Some films have to cross those barriers like before Sholay there was a Mother India and before that, Mughal-E-Azam. Now 42 years later, Baahubali 2 has crossed those barriers. We should salute the film but I think the fairest thing would be is to give it time.”

‘Sholay ran for five years at Minerva theatre’: Taran Adarsh
I don’t think you can compare either film or say one can replace the other. Both are iconic films. Baahubali 2 has done phenomenal business across the country and is rewriting the rules of the business, but Sholay is an iconic film that changed the entire way people thought of Hindi films with the business it did. Sholay was a different era and genre. It was a path-breaking film in terms of business. It ran for five years at Minerva theatre in Grant Road in Mumbai and was only discontinued because Ramesh Sippy’s Shaan was coming (There were no multiplexes then). You can’t compare both because of today’s times and the social media and television spotlight. Media wasn’t so aggressive 42 years ago. One commonality both films have is that both were steeped in Indian ethos and emotions and were desi entertainers. They were not inspired by the Indiana Jones or Star Wars series.

‘Baahubali 2 is a parallel and not a substitute to replace Sholay.’: Akshaye Rathi
The business model has changed entirely since Sholay (1975). The film went on to become a golden jubilee and became a trendsetter. Now, Baahubali 2 is a trendsetter. The kind of business it’s done is the equivalent of Sholay or a DDLJ then. You can say that Baahubali 2 is a parallel and not a substitute to replace Sholay. Baahubali 2 has shown the potential of what the Indian theatrical market can be. In Bollywood, people throw success parties when their films do Rs 100 crore business. Baahubali 2 has done overall business spanning across pan-India even though it lacked pan-India stars, with the Hindi BO business being as huge as Telugu, Malayalam and other languages. It’s a phenomenon and these things don’t happen too often in the history of Indian cinema. It may not happen in the next 25 years till S S Rajamouli makes his next movie.

‘Every generation gets a new big movie’: Amul Mohan
Sholay can never be replaced as the greatest Hindi film ever. It has stood the test of time and been here for the longest time and people have used it as a textbook. Every generation gets a new big movie which stays in the mind for a very long time. The way B2 has made money and has opened up scenarios for Hindi films also, is tremendous, but you need to build the hype like Baahubali 2 did. The movie is a blockbuster in the truest form. Whatever numbers it makes in its lifetime, everybody will speak about it for the longest time.