BY ANUJ RADIA

Just two years ago, Salman Khan had set in motion his dream project – ‘Salman Talkies’. Salman Talkies would be a chain of theatres, where movie tickets will cost lesser compared to the other theatre chains. The tickets would be tax-free. Also, children from underprivileged backgrounds will get the tickets free of cost.

Khan said that the project is taking longer because there are a lot of changes and modifications made in the past two years, and also, that he needs to be very careful regarding what he is doing. He said that he needs to pay extra attention to even the minute details so that the venture is successful.

While in conversation with a Mumbai daily, Salman said, “I had a lot of plans for the theatre chain but it’s taking me longer because I need to be very careful. There are a lot of logistical details involved so that the project doesn’t shut down.”

The 52-year-old actor also said that the theatres will not be in the upscale cities like Bandra or Juhu but on the outskirts of Mumbai.

Khan expressed his desire to inaugurate each theatre himself. He said, “There are so many things I want to do in the exhibitor and distributor space, and by turning distributor with Race 3, I have taken my first step in that direction. This chain adds another aspect to my portfolio.”

Salman had earlier talked about how the tickets are so expensive in the tier-one cities, costing Rs 400 to 500. He believes that the box-office collections can only be improved by increasing footfalls in smaller regions by building more theatres. He said that the ticket rates should be Rs 120-150 for the weekdays, and for the weekends, it should not be more than Rs 250.

The actor-producer has recently turned distributor for his upcoming film Race 3. The film was supposed to be distributed by Eros International but they had bailed out in the last minute. This is where Khan stepped in. He will also be distributing brother-in-law Aayush Sharma’s upcoming movie Loveratri.

He said, “We were in talks with Eros for the longest time. Eventually, we reached a phase where the terms and conditions were not met, and the deal fell through. But something good came out of it. I am distributing Race 3 and will also distribute Aayush’s debut film.”

Salman Khan is the co-producer of Race 3 along with Ramesh Taurani’s TIPS Industries Ltd. The film is directed by Remo D’souza. Khan will also produce Loveratri. It would mark the actor’s fifth home production.