After a lackluster 2020 owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, Bollywood breathed a sigh of relief this year when theatres re-opened post the lifting of the lockdown. Filmmakers wasted no time in announcing the release date of their movies in the pipeline. However, the cine-goers are still cautious about visiting cinema halls owing to the rising cases of COVID-19 in many parts of the country, and the first quarterly report of Bollywood is a proof to this.
Films like Roohi, Mumbai Saga, Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar and Saina got a big screen release. Sadly, these movies failed to breath new life into the theatre business as COVID-19 continues to raise its ugly head.
Director Hardik Mehta's horror comedy Roohi starring Janhvi Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao and Varun Sharma was the first major mainstream release in Bollywood after the re-opening of theatres. Despite mixed reviews from the critics, the film surprised trade analysts when it raked Rs 3.06 crore on its opening day on the auspicious day of Maha Shivratri. By the end of its second week of release, the film minted a lifetime collection of Rs 21.58 crore.
2. Mumbai Saga
After Janhvi Kapoor's Roohi, John Abraham-Emraan Hashmi's gangster film Mumbai Saga also took the theatrical route to entertain the audience. The makers were keen for a big screen release for their film. Sadly, the film too, ended up facing the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic. The film which received mixed reviews, collected Rs 13.43 crore by the end of its first week of release.
3. Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar
Dibakar Banerjee's much-delayed film Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar finally made it to the theatres this year. Starring Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra in leading roles, the neo-noir film failed to strike a chord with the audience and sank without a trace at the box office.
Amole Gupte's much-awaited biopic on ace badminton player Saina Nehwal titled Saina released in theatres on March 26, 2021. The film was in the news for several reasons including Shraddha Kapoor's exit and the alleged poster goof-up. Post its release, this Parineeti Chopra-starrer failed to find an audience for the big screen. Its dismal performance has left everyone shocked. Reportedly, the sports drama managed to collect just Rs 70 lakh in three days.
On a related note, films like Arjun Rampal's Nail Polish, Pankaj Tripathi's Kaagaz, Vidyut Jammwal's The Power, Kajol's Tribhanga, Parineeti Chopra's The Girl On The Train, Manoj Bajpayee's Silence...Can You Hear It? and Sanya Malhotra's Pagglait released directly on OTT platforms. Out of this lot, Nail Polish, Kaagaz, Tribhanga and Pagglait succeeded in leaving a lasting impression on the audience.