Salman Khan’s Tubelight will not release in Pakistan because the local filmmakers are fearing that it will pose a strong threat to their films.
According to the President of the Indian Film Exporters Association, Hirachand Dand, local distributors in Pakistan are hesitant to acquire the film, since there are two big local films scheduled for an Eid release and the makers do not want any competition, especially in the form of a Salman starrer.
“Salman has millions of fans in Pakistan and the filmmakers are in no mood to pitch their films against his. They are determined to protect the interests of their films instead.”
“The distributors are in no mood to pay the asking price for a Salman film even if it is released two weeks later since it would have released all over the world by then. The business will also have reduced by 30 percent. And these days, pirated versions of films invariably get leaked online within a week of their release,” he says, adding that a majority of Salman-starrers had released on the same day in Pakistan.
Veteran Pakistan distributor Amjad Rashi confirmed the same. “I am not the right person to comment but I doubt whether the film will get clearance considering the Indo-China war subject. Salman is no doubt a big star in Pakistan but the film could also face other hurdles as it reflects anti-China sentiments,” he said.
However, COO of Salman Khan Films- Amar Butala says, “Salman Khan Films is committed to taking Tubelight to markets across the globe with our overseas distributors Yash Raj Films. Salman has a huge following in Pakistan, which has only grown with the positive messaging on Bajrangi Bhaijaan. We hope to release Tubelight in Pakistan as well, and our efforts continue in that direction, but we respect the law of the land and judiciary if they decide otherwise.”
Salman Khan’s last Eid release, Sultan remains the highest grosser in Pakistan.