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“Aamir Khan’s Sitare Zameen Par Reduces Delhi Shoot Amid Cost Surge; Raid 2 and Others Opt for Lucknow, MP”

Delhi Loses Its Luster for Film Shoots as Costs Soar: Aamir Khan's Sitare Zameen Par and Raid 2 Shift to Lucknow and Madhya Pradesh

Delhi’s allure as a prime location for film shoots has dwindled significantly, with productions like Aamir Khan’s “Sitare Zameen Par” and “Raid 2” scaling back their schedules in the city due to escalating expenses. The trend reflects a broader shift in the Indian film industry, where filmmakers are opting for more budget-friendly alternatives like Lucknow and Madhya Pradesh.

The soaring costs associated with shooting in Delhi have forced filmmakers to rethink their production strategies. For instance, securing locations like the Rajiv Chowk metro station or the international airport comes with exorbitant price tags of ₹2 lakhs per hour and ₹12 lakhs for four hours, respectively. These expenses, coupled with additional charges from various authorities like the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, New Delhi Municipal Council, parking facilities, and security, have made shooting in Delhi financially burdensome.

Recent developments reveal that even originally planned longer shoots in Delhi have been revised due to budget constraints. Aamir Khan’s “Sitare Zameen Par” initially scheduled for a month-long shoot in Delhi has been condensed to 8-10 days in July. Similarly, Janhvi Kapoor’s “Ulajh” redirected its shoot to Bhopal from Delhi due to budget overshooting in London.

Industry insiders lament the trend, citing challenges in affordability and logistical complexities. Production costs have skyrocketed, leading to reductions in crew sizes and shifts towards more cost-effective locations like Uttarakhand, where subsidies and favorable shoot conditions prevail.

The phenomenon of recreating Delhi in other cities has become commonplace, with films like Ajay Devgn’s “Raid 2” opting to recreate the capital’s ambiance in Lucknow. This approach not only saves costs but also streamlines production processes by leveraging subsidies and quick permissions in alternative locations.

Veteran line producers like Ravi Sarin express concerns over the diminishing opportunities in Delhi for film shoots, attributing the decline to skyrocketing costs and logistical challenges. The industry’s shift towards budget-friendly options reflects a pragmatic approach to managing production expenses and ensuring efficient project execution amidst economic constraints.

Sources By Agencies

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