Why ‘Dhoom 3’ was silent on promotions?

'Dhoom 3' got off to a great start in the publicity department.

Written by Priyanka Sinha Jha | Mumbai | Published:December 20, 2013 12:00 pm

While Dhoom 3’s low-key promotion has puzzled the industry at large,results of this less-is-more strategy are eagerly awaited.

The film (Dhoom 3) as per the studio’s assessment,being a high recall product is likely to get the footfalls without setting into motion a publicity juggernaut. In the age of publicity overkill,there is something to be said for being smartly silent.

Dhoom 3,one of the most awaited films this year,got off to a great start in the publicity department with the

tagline — End this year with a Dhoom! It’s great wordplay resonating the franchise’s essence,essentially a

youthful and fun,heist film.

Given its past success,the third edition this year,given its past success,is even more looked out for due to several factors — for starters,there is a change of director — after Sanjay Gadhvi,who directed the two editions of the film,it is now the film’s writer Vijay Krishna Acharya who has taken on the director’s mantle. The film in addition to Abhishek Bachchan and Uday Chopra, from the earlier editions,has Aamir Khan as Sahir,the clown thief and Katrina Kaif as an accomplice. However,beyond these highlights Dhoom 3,for one of the most watched out for films,has been rather low-key on its publicity.

Some say that superstar Aamir Khan,known for innovative marketing and YRF head honcho Aditya Chopra are of the opinion that in this case,‘Less is more.’ The film as per the studio’s assessment,being a high recall product is likely to get the footfalls without setting into motion a publicity juggernaut. The logic obviously cannot be faulted. In the age of publicity overkill,there is something to be said for being smartly silent. Madras Cafe,a political thriller based on Rajiv Gandhi’s asassination,refrained from excessive publicity due to the nature of its content and registered a good return on interest.

Although in a crowded marketplace,keeping a low profile is equally fraught with risks. For starters it takes a while for positive word of mouth to go around and by the time the audience is convinced about stepping out in to theatres,the number of shows is usually reduced in order to accommodate new film releases.

This year’s blockbusters all touching the Rs.100-200 crore mark are testimony to the virtues of a publicity blitzkrieg,and then there were those that preferred a more subtle approach like Kai Po Che or ABCD – Any Body Can Dance. Smaller films like Ship of Theseus and The Lunchbox deviated from the conventional route,opting instead for a strategy that was more in keeping with international norms,wherein they centred publicity around accolades gathered at festivals and even held several preview screenings way ahead of the release! And it worked rather well for them.

There is no reason for a new approach to work for Dhoom 3; there is an evident curiosity around the film and the absence of big releases in the following weeks is likely to help their cause further. If it does break previous box-office records as expected,despite being low-key,the year,as far as Bollywood is concerned,would have certainly ended with a Dhoom!

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