We idolise our superstars, be it Salman, Shahrukh, Aamir or Rajnikanth down south. Their films almost always open to packed theatres. These big budget movies also make a ton of money at the box office. And then there are the small budget movies that manage to rake in the moolah quietly. Starring newcomers or lesser known actors, they manage to woo the audiences with their content. Sonu ke Titu ki Sweety which premieres on TV is one such sleeper super hit. Made on a modest budget of 24 crore, it crossed 100 crore in box office collections. We look back at other gems which came as a breath of fresh air and stole the show.
A movie about a sperm donor! Trust the mercurial Shoojit Sircar to make a winner with a theme like that. Made on a paltry budget of Rs. 5 crore, it had debutants Ayushmann Khurrana and Yami Gautam in the lead roles. The movie managed to win over audiences with its contemporary subject and sensitive portrayal. Vicky Donor not only launched the lead actors but also resurrected Annu Kapoor’s career.
Kahaani broke many stereotypes. A thriller movie with a pregnant female protagonist was unheard of in Bollywood. Made on a tight budget of Rs. 8 crore, it grossed over Rs. 78 crore at the box office. Kahaani was not only a commercial success, but loved by the critics as well. The movie went on to win many awards including the IIFA award for best film. After ‘The Dirty Picture’, Vidya Balan yet again proved that she could carry a film on her shoulders.
Dibakar Banerjee pulled off a coup when he shot an entire movie on hand-held and hidden cameras. Love Sex aur Dhokha introduced a new concept in moviemaking. It featured three different stories revolving around emotions of love, sex and betrayal. This path-breaking movie proved that content was indeed king.
Luv Ranjan’s depiction of man as the weaker sex struck a chord with audiences, especially the male ones. The bittersweet romantic comedy about buddies, bonding and girl trouble was a sleeper hit. It was made on a budget of Rs. 10 crore and starred unknown entities. Pyaar ka Punchnama broke the myth that films need ‘macho men’ to succeed.
A seemingly powerless middle-class family turns the tables on a land grabber by pulling a con on him. The light-hearted comedy boasted of a cast that didn’t have much star value (apart from Anupam Kher), but loads of talent. It brought back the brand of film-making that was made famous by Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Sai Paranjpye — simple stories about ordinary people.
The satirical spoof on dreaded terrorist Osama Bin Laden was a roaring success. Pakistani pop artiste Ali Zafar pulled out all stops in Tere Bin Laden and it was a runaway hit. The quirky film was rich in sarcasm and filled with rib-tickling moments and hilarious situations.