Qurbani vs Karz box office clash: The result left Rishi Kapoor devastated and sent him in depression.
Rishi Kapoor’s autobiography “Khullam Khulla – Rishi Kapoor Uncensored” is out, and going by the excepts, Rishi has lived up to his reputation (going khullam khulla, that’s what he does in real life as well).
Rishi Kapoor also spoke about his depression after Subhash Ghai directed Karz failed at the box office.
There were several great things in Karz – songs, plot, etc. that Rishi was confident that the movie will do well. Back in those days, Rishi Kapoor would be part of multi-starrer movies, and gave very few solo hits. So rishi Kapoor was hoping that Karz would do well; Karz had hit songs like Om Shanti Om, Dard-e-dil, and the haunting theme (which musicians love even today).
With so many positives, even director Subhash Ghai was confident, and as per grape-vine, when he came to know that Feroz Khan was also releasing Qurbani around the same time, Ghai advised Khan to defer the release of Qurbani. However, the flamboyant Feroz Khan didn’t take the advice.
Qurbani (by Feroz Khan) also released on the same day. Even Feroz Khan had everything at stake, and had spent his last penny on the movie, which also featured Vinod Khanna and the sexy Zeenat Aman. The flamboyant and stylish Feroz Khan got a brand new, imported Mercedes smashed in one scene in Qurbani. Even Qurbani had great music, composed by Kalyanji Anandji. But the disco song ‘Aap Jaisa Koi’ by Pakistani singer Nazia Hassan and composed by Biddu had started topping the charts.
So when the two movies – Karz and Qurbani clashed at the box-office, the result devastated Ghai and Rishi Kapoor.
Not only did Qurbani crush Karz at the box office clash, the movie emerged as the biggest hit of the year, leaving even Dostana starring Amitabh Bachhan and Shatrughan Sinha behind.
That was a time when the audience were ready to lap up movies high on action (thanks to the angry young man ‘Big B’) and glamour. The audience found the peppy music, high voltage action, sexy Zeenat Aman too appealing in Qurbani.
Karz’ failure drowned Rishi Kapoor into depression, which he has mentioned in his biography.
For a few months, Rishi Kapoor was just not able to face the camera anymore. This was the time when he was shooting simultaneously for four films: Naseeb, Deedar-e-Yaar, Zamaane Ko Dikhana Hai and Prem Rog.
Rishi says stars like Amitabh Bachchan, Hema Malini and Shatrughan Sinha were kept on standby on the last day of filming for Naseeb, because he just could not face the camera. Filmmaker Nasir Husain even sent him money, thinking that Rishi was facing financial difficulties.
Gradually, Rishi Kapoor picked up the pieces and regained his normalcy. Rishi Kapoor later revealed that even superstars like Amitabh Bachchan and Yusuf saab (Dilip Kumar) faced similar situations in their respective lives.
Karz however bagged the honours for the best music of the year, beating Qurbani, at the Filmfare Awards that year. Karz attained the status of an iconic musical in later years, and was even remade by Himesh Reshammiya (the remake was a disaster).