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“If 50% of profit is taken by heroes, What About Us?”: Karan Johar Slams A-listers

Karan Johar, who has produced a whole lot of Bollywood films over the decades, ruins the myth that his actors give him a discount out of friendship.

The actor’s demand

For A-listers like Akshay Kumar, Aamir Khan, Salman Khan, SRK, Ranveer Singh, and many more; the fees that they demand are not only mindless but insane. Discussing the same, popular filmmaker and producer Karan Johar calls this ridiculous.


The 50-year-old appeared on the Masters’ Union podcast, discussing how the budget is split among the actors, producers, directors, and theatre owners.

“Unfortunately, the pie of it is with the movie stars, which should not be the case. It’s not that every movie star can open a film at every given point in time. But you are paying them top dollar. If it’s a big director then the divide is: 50 to the star and 30 to the director, a little more to the writer, and the producer is the last person to make the money.”


Johar adds that today’s stars won’t enjoy the same kind of stardom that stars like Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Aamir Khan, and Amitabh Bachchan among others have. He said, “Any of our new generation of movie stars can’t have the aura and magic of Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, Aamir Khan, Mr. Bachchan, Akshay Kumar, Ajay Devgn, and Hrithik Roshan; they were the last of the Mohicans.”


He continued, “See fame and superstardom are two different things. You can be a YouTuber and be famous. But are you a superstar? Will people stop and stand in a line just because of you? That ain’t happening anymore.”

Distribution of the profits

Speaking on the distribution of the profits, Karan told, “In the superstars’ economics, 60-70% goes to the star. In the non-superstar economics, maybe 20, 30, and then divided by… if the director is big, then the writer, then technicians, and then it gets divided equally after that. It is harder to negotiate with the actors than with the distributors.”

“You don’t want to hurt or upset somebody, because ultimately, they are stars, they come with delicate egos, they come with their management which is sometimes the bigger stars. I have a management agency of my own and I keep telling them, ‘Please, you must work for the producer and must not work for the actor.’ It’s not an unpragmatic producer, it’s someone who is giving you data and analysis, at least listen to him.”


Here’s the full podcast: