Call them arch rivals or call them good friends, the Shahrukh Khan vs Aamir Khan war has been fought time and over now since the past 14 years. Surprising there has been no clear winner because both SRK and Aamir Khan are hugely popular in Bollywood, with a sea of fan following.
Back in 1994, Shahrukh Khan's movie Ram Jaane released along with Aamir Khan's Akele Hum Akele Tum released on the same day. Believe it or not, both of them bombed. While SRK earned some pittance in the north, Aamir Khan's movie got some revenue in Mumbai and western parts of India. Since then both Aamir Khan and Shahrukh Khan have been very conscious about the movies they sign or produce. Viewers may note that both are friends but careful not to be subdued by one another. For instance, Rang De Basanti, Aamir Khan's iconic film had Shahrukh Khan initially in the role of R. Madhavan which he had declined. Shahrukh Khan had also asked Aamir Khan to be a part of Om Shanti Om, item number, but Aamir Khan had declined, because he was "busy".
Also Shahrukh Khan's loss has been Aamir Khan's gain and vice versa. Darr was supposed to star Aamir Khan who had doubts about doing a villain's role. The gutsy SRK did it anyway. Similarly Lagaan was offered to Shahrukh Khan who didnt think it would work and Aamir Khan ended up making history out of Lagaan.
Cut to 2007- 2008. Both the Khans, Aamir Khan and Shahrukh Khan size up for the competition in a big manner and pay attention to marketing their films in a sassy manner. Last year in 2007, Shahrukh Khan did his best to promote and market his film Om Shanti Om in the best manner possible, and the efforts paid off. Om Shanti Om became one of the biggest all time hits in Bollywood. Contrast to Aamir Khan who used low key marketing and let the product for itself in the form of his directoral debut Taare Zameen Par. But just as collections picked up, Aamir Khan made sure that Taare Zameen Par was reached out to everyone. He held charity screenings, marketed star kid Darsheel Safary in the best manner possible and did everything to ensure that Taare Zameen Par stayed in public memory for ever. Not surprisingly, considering Taare Zameen Par is one of the best movies of our times.
In 2008; ie now, Shahrukh Khan has gone for low key marketing. He did not market Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi aggressively. He stated that it was not the right time to promote or talk about his film considering the tragic 26/11 scenario. Though there was low key advertising and promotion, Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi is doing roaring business, proving that Brand Shahrukh is Brand Shahrukh. Well, Aamir Khan who adopted a low key strategy for TZP is now going all ends fired for Ghajini. He built an 8 packs physique an impressive one at that, following SRK's six packs wonder which he build for Om Shanti Om. Aamir Khan has come up with slick promotion tactics for Ghajini, be it print, television or online. He had promoted Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na well, but for Ghajini, he is leaving no stone unturned. Aamir Khan recently asked theatre staff of Big Cinemas and PVR, which are playing Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, to adopt the Ghajini hair cut. It is evident: you are watching Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi with the aura of Ghajini around you!
Asked what SRK thought of Aamir Khan's recent strategy for Ghajini, Shahrukh Khan claimed, "I think it is a good strategy. You take the biggest brand in the country that is SRK and then use that platform to publicise yourself. I think Aamir rocks. The problem is that I cannot use any another brand because there is no one bigger than me".