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Taxi Ontrack, Romance Turns Sour!

Courtesy: IndiaFM
Wednesday, March 08, 2006

For four continuous weeks, Rang De Basanti was having a dream run at the multiplexes. The collections of this UTV-produced film at metros were nothing short of a miracle, considering the fact that most films turn powerless after a power-packed opening weekend.

But Taxi No 9211, the new release distributed by UTV, made a dent in the business of Rang De Basanti at multiplexes this weekend. The Nana-John starrer didn't fetch a record-breaking start like Rang De Basanti, but the business of this moderately-priced film ranged from 50% + [North] to 70% + [Mumbai] at multiplexes.

With a majority of recent releases, post Rang De Basanti, not catching the attention of the paying public, the collections of Taxi No 9211 brought back a smile on the faces of the multiplex owners, who were losing sleep after a few recent releases drew a complete blank at the ticket counters.

Thanks to the strategy of performing 10 to 13 shows everyday at multiplexes, Taxi No 9211 had an above average weekend at multiplexes, but was average to below average at single screens. The silver lining is the moderate pricing of the film as also the fact that there's no major opposition for the next three weeks. Keeping that in mind, I feel Taxi No 9211 will be the first choice of the multiplex-going audience in its second weekend as well.

The second release, Humko Tumse Pyaar Hai, was given a royal ignore by the paying public. In fact, the collections of this love story were pathetic at several screens, with multiplexes performing poorly than the single screens. You may find this hard to believe but the management of a leading multiplex in Mumbai was forced to cancel a show or two due to lack of audience. That's not all, the collections of the film were in the range of 3% to 5% in certain shows.

Expectedly, the film performed better [25% +] in certain pockets of the Hindi belt. But will the producers, who spent a fortune on the film and released the film in their account in certain circuits, recover the investment? Nope!

Another film that went completely unnoticed was Sun Zarra. Not that anyone was expecting this love story to create any magic whatsoever, but the low-key publicity and unsung release went against the film completely.

[Week: February 25-27, 2005]

Dharmesh Darshan must've heaved a sigh of relief. After the lukewarm start of his last release, Haan... Maine Bhi Pyaar Kiya, the director had to prove the cynics and detractors that Raya Hindustani was no fluke.

The opening of Bewafaa, his new release, ranged from excellent to good average and the opening weekend was in the range of 90% + at most centres. But Monday onwards, the collections started sliding downwards at several stations.

One of the key factors that went against the film was the absence of strong emotions in the latter half. While the film was holding well in Gujarat, Rajasthan and parts of Uttar Pradesh, the drop in the collections at several places was more pronounced.

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