Saroj Khan applauds remixed Ek Do Teen, but it’s no sure shot recipe for success
The iconic Ek Do Teen from N Chandra's Tezaab in 1988 is the latest song from the past to be subject to a brutal remix. The latest version of the immensely popular dance track has Jacqueline Fernandez attempting a ‘tribute’ to the legendary Madhuri Dixit. The remixed version of the song has come under severe backlash from multiple quarters. While social media has labelled it ‘crass’, Tezaab director N Chandra has called it ‘creative vandalism’.
Even as the song is at the receiving end of criticism, several Bollywood heavyweights have put their weight behind it. After Salman Khan said he ‘loved the song’, the choreographer of the original number, Saroj Khan, released a press statement echoing Khan. “I’m so happy and proud of Ahmed Khan and Ganesh that they are giving a tribute to us. They have all my blessings,” the statement said. The male lead in Baaghi 2 Tiger Shroff, himself a great dancer defended the song saying, “When you touch a remake, you are bound to get mixed reactions.”
The increasing debate over the song raises the pertinent question on whether the song was even necessary for the success of Baaghi 2 in which it will feature. The song has been watched over 2.6 crores times on YouTube in the 5 long days that it has been online. While the number may be moderately high, we can learn from past tunes that remixes are no guarantee to box office success.
Let’s take a look at a few of the iconic dance numbers from of old that were remixed to make it relevant, so to speak, with the current audience. While Tamma Tamma from Badrinath Ki Dulhania may have helped the film, The Humma Song from Ok Jaanu did nothing to boost the fortunes of the Shraddha Kapoor, Aditya Roy Kapur film. Another case in point is the legendary song Laila Main Laila from the Shah Rukh Khan film Raees. While the song has over 26 crore hits on YouTube, the film just about recovered its making budget. A majority of the remixes in the last few years have not just been the old songs rehashed but they have also a generous dose of rap (read Badshah) added to the tune. While the addition of rhyme and rhythm may strike a chord with younger and more hip audiences, most seem to want to keep the exclusivity of the original song intact. A few remixes, namely Hawa Hawai' from Tumhari Sulu or even Varun Dhawan in Judwaa 2 songs Tan Tana Tan, have however succeeded in keeping the essence of the original undamaged.
The subsequent success of the film stemming from a remix cannot be measured. The remixed song may (or may not) add value to the film’s box office success but whether a thoughtless remix is a plausible attempt continues to remain a relevant debate.