PK released all over India amidst much hype on 19th December 2014. The story was kept under wraps right till the release date. Once the film was released, it was evident that PK was a satire on the ills that plague religion. There was some outrage online saying the film is “Anti-Hindu”, but as we have already explained, much of this outrage is mis-directed.
The interesting point to note is, even when such Online outrage was going on Social Media and to an extent on Mainstream Media, no untoward incidents or protests happened on the ground. Now suddenly, a good 9 days after PK’s release, after it has exhausted all the hype generated, some groups have begun vandalising theatres. News reports claim these people are either affiliated to VHP or Bajrang Dal.
Already people on Social media have begun to smell a rat, especially with regards to the timing of these so called protests. Even some very senior and respected journalists have cast aspersions on the authenticity of these actions:
@suchetadalal SOP in many Tamil film releases.
— Chitra Subramaniam (@chitraSD) December 29, 2014
In fact Chitra Subramanian goes on to claim that such activities are “Standard Operation Procedures” (SOP) down south. Here are the views of some more Twitterati:
— Diptarup Chakraborti (@Diptonew) December 29, 2014
While we wonder about the timing, It certainly seems to have caused the desired effects:
— Arun Naik (@arunbnaik) December 29, 2014
It is important to note that PK had one of the lowest pre-release promotion: No Appearance on any TV shows, No Public shows etc. Knowing that Aamir Khan is a master salesman, we wonder how he missed this trick.
Or has he diverted the pre-release marketing budget to post-release, and have we missed his trick? After all, Bollywood is known to use such means, like the time Shah Rukh Khan has his tiff with Shiv Sena just before My Name is Khan released.