Aamir Khan's latest blockbuster Dangal made headlines earlier this month as it became the highest grossing non-US film in China.
The film, which is based on India's Phogat sisters who were encouraged to pursue wrestling by their retired father in spite of the sport being dominated by men, has earned approximately Rs 872 crore in China until May 28. It beat the record of Aamir's earlier film, the 2014 science fiction film PK.
How does he think Dangal managed the feat?
“The reason it has become so huge, according to me, in China is that they connected on an emotional level with the story, the characters and the moments," Aamir said to Hindustan Times.
"I have been reading their reactions on social media. They have been saying things like how the movie moved them and how the characters inspired them so much. It made them realise what their parents went through. Many of them called up their parents and cried. It’s a very emotional reaction. That is what has made the film really work.”
Still, the film's success in China was a surprise to Aamir.
“While we were hoping that ‘Dangal’ connects with the people of China, not in our wildest dreams we thought that this is the kind of connect we would have. It was unprecedented. We are pleasantly surprised,” he said.
The film, however, also garnered some negative feedback as some thought eate history by becoming the first highest-earning non-Hollywood film in the country.
The Nitesh Tiwari directorial that chronicles the story of the real life Phogat sisters -- Geeta and Babita -- released in China as Shuai Jiao Baba (Let’s Wrestle, Dad) on May 5 in around 7,000 screens. The film garnered Rs 872 crore in China until May 28 evening.
So what clicked with the Chinese audience this time?
Dangal was slammed by a section of the people in China, especially feminists, who tagged it as a movie that reeks of patriarchy and male chauvinism.
But Aamir is overwhelmed with the positive impact that the movie has left on people. “It had a deep impact on women and men, and how we as a society can treat the girl child. It also had a big impact on wrestling. The kind of interest people have taken in wrestling after the film is significant,” he said.