Mumbai: The tussle between “Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai- Dobara” and “Chennai Express” over their release dates, has finally ended with “OUATIM-Dobara” opting out of the box office race to secure the release slotted for Eid.

While the announcement about Ekta allegedly rescheduling her film for release on August 15 took the industry by surprise, the Shah Rukh Khan starrer now has no opponent in sight for its much talked-about date with Eid. Incidentally, we hear that it is SRK’s close proximity with Ekta’s father, the veteran actor Jeetendra, that an amicable solution could be reached.

An industry insider says, “Shah Rukh and Jeetendra share a very close bond. SRK is a fan of Jeetuji. In fact, the veteran also appeared in a song for SRK’s Om Shanti Om. It was thanks to their relationship that the clash has now been averted.”

Sources say the allotment of a new date for its release should also be a win-win for the “OUATIM- Dobara” makers. Just like the previous date of August 8 (Eid), August 15 (Independence Day) too is a national holiday.

In an official statement, SRK expressed his happiness at the development and stated, “Keeping in mind that both weekends are good times for film releases, Jeetendra sir being the senior-most showed the path. He took the decision to move OUATIM Dobara to August 15. This is extremely graceful of him. UTV, Rohit and I are very happy with the decision made and we thank Jeetu sir and Balaji for the same. This should pave the way for such mature and sensible amicable understandings whenever two films release on the same day in future too."

What will Ekta gain?

Ekta Kapoor, in her press statement, said that the decision had been taken keeping the best interests for both the films in mind. The producer stated, “My father and Shah Rukh spoke and have clearly worked out what is best for both the films. Both are big and keenly awaited and should not be made to eat into each other’s business. I have huge respect for SRK and wish him the best.”

Initially, the producer had stood her ground when speculations about the two films eating into each other’s share had gained momentum. However, it appears that Ekta’s stand has considerably softened.
Industry experts say that the change of date will get the filmmaker around 2,500 screens, which 500 to 700 more than the initial estimation, had it released on Eid. The trade says that several of the screens that would come her way now would be of better quality than what she would have been allotted otherwise.

While it appears that both the parties are going home happy, sources say that UTV, the production house behind Chennai Express, has forwarded a thank-you note to Balaji for altering their release date. Looks like all’s well that ends well.