A video showing a massive crowd gathered at what appears to be a shopping mall has been doing the rounds with the claim that this was the condition of Lucknow's LuLu Mall, where thousands gathered to watch Aamir Khan and Kareena Kapoor Khan-starrer Laal Singh Chaddha.
The claim comes amid growing calls to boycott the film, which started on social media after an old interview of Aamir Khan speaking about "growing intolerance" in the country, started recirculating.
The boycott was such that the film's opening day collection at the box office was the lowest of any Aamir Khan movie in the last 13 years. Around 1,300 shows were also reduced across the country.
However, we found that the widely shared video was from the HiLITE mall in Kerala. The massive crowd was gathered for the promotional event of a Malayalam film, Thallumaala.
The claim suggests that people had gathered in large numbers to watch the Aamir Khan-starrer Laal Singh Chaddha at Lulu Mall in Lucknow. It goes on to state that the film is a superhit.
WHAT WE FOUND OUT
We used InVID Google Chrome extension to fragment the video into key frames and used these frames to conduct a reverse image search using keywords such as "LuLu Mall Crowd."
This led us to a news report published by English news channel News 18 on 11 August 2022.
The report mentioned that the crowd had gathered for the promotional event of a Malayalam film, Thallumaala, which was eventually cancelled due to security concerns.
Further, the clip is from HiLITE Mall in Kerala, not Lulu Mall as the viral post claims.
We found a reel posted on HiLITE Mall's official handle which captured the different parts of the promotional event. It also showed an overwhelming number of people present at the venue.
So far, Laal Singh Chaddha has only earned Rs 45-46 crore after five days of its release, according to a report by Hindustan Times.
It also saw a drop in earnings on Independence Day, a rare sight for any film on a national holiday. The film's release clashed with the release of Akshay Kumar's Raksha Bandhan. While this could be one reason for the low earnings, the massive backlash and boycott trends for the film clearly remain the top factors.
Evidently, a video from the promotional event of Thallumaala is being falsely shared as an overwhelming gathering to see Laal Singh Chaddha.