Bollywood may have to face huge commercial loss if actor Salman Khan is found guilty in the 2002 hit-and-run case.
Khan is one of the busiest actors presently with three films and several brand endorsements. But if he is found guilty in the hit-and-run case, then entertainment industry might suffer huge loss.
On Wednesday, three witnesses identified Khan as the driver of the SUV which killed a pavement dweller and injured four others in 2002. During the trial, the witnesses told session court that they saw Khan getting out of the driver's side of the SUV.
If the actor is convicted, he might face jail term up to 10 years which will have an adverse effect on the entertainment industry.
The actor, who has been facing legal trouble in the case since past decade, is worth more than ₹500 crore in Bollywood, presently, as several big filmmakers have roped him for their films.
While his film assignments have around ₹350 crore riding on him, his endorsements are pegged at around ₹50 crore, Hindustan Times reported.
Khan is presently endorsing more than 15 brands including a cold drink, travel website and innerwear brands among others. And he has been shooting for two films - "Kick" and "Prem Ratan Dhan Payo" – which will be affected by the court verdict.
"Kick": Khan has been shooting for Sajid Nadiadwala's debut directorial film "Kick." The budget of the action thriller is reportedly very high. Several reports say that 80 percent shooting of the film is complete, but the remaining 20 percent is giving trouble. A 40- day shoot is yet to be shot which is delaying the post-production work, a unit member told Mid-Day.
"Prem Ratan Dhan Payo": Khan has also started shooting Sooraj Barjatya's film "Prem Ratan Dhan Payo." The budget of the film is yet not revealed, but considering the big star casts, the production cost will be reportedly high.
The other two films "No Entry Mein Entry" and Kabir Khan's upcoming untitled film are yet to go on floors. "No Entry Mein Entry" director Anees Bazmee has said that the legal issue is concerning.
"Of course, everyone is concerned about Salman, but I think it's early days in the case, and there's a long way to go before you can say that things might go against him," trade analyst Komal Nahta told Hindustan Times.
Apart from films and ads, Khan is also producing two films. The first film is the remake of "Hero" which will have Sooraj Pancholi and Athiya Shetty in the lead role. Pancholi and Shetty will make their debut with this film.
The second film is "Ek Tha Tiger" director Kabir's upcoming film in which he will be playing the lead role. The budget of Kabir's untitled film is said to be more than ₹150 crore.
Last year, actor Sanjay Dutt was sentenced to five years in jail for illegal possession of a pistol and a rifle during the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts. When Dutt was jailed ₹250 crore were riding on him.