Film trade expert Girish Wankhede writes exclusively for Filmibeat about the last week's box office collections and analysis.
Last week had been dominated by the National Cinema Day. While it replicated to what US cinemas did on 3 September amidst big fanfare where they saw a sudden surge in footfalls, the scene here in India was one notch above. The Day admitted record footfalls of more than 65 lakh, which is the biggest in the history of Indian cinema! Every film worked with a slab of Rs 75 each for a ticket in almost every cinema hall in the country, which consolidates the fact that the audience is price conscious. They will come to the cinemas only if the ticket-rate correction happens.
The National Cinema Day experiments in the US and India proved correct, as the crowd thronged to theatres irrespective of the movies. This euphoria was witnessed for the first time in the post-COVID era, which was a huge relief for an otherwise hit-starved film sector. Now, this successful one-day experiment has given a way to another Rs 100 slab decided as Navratri Offer from 26 September to 29 September in all pan-India cinema chains. These offers will give better insights to correct the prices of tickets as well as of the cola, popcorn and samosas in the multiplexes.
Brahmastra Box Office Third Week
This is the third week in theatres for Ranbit Kapoor-Alia Bhatt film Brahmastra and it is still holding on. The film collected Rs 173.22 crore in its first week at the domestic box office and Rs 56.78 crore in its second week. Brahmastra further got an advantage of the National Cinema Day in its third week, wherein it collected Rs 8.80 crore, which is a giant jump owing to the fact that the day prior it collected only Rs 2.70 crore. On the following Saturday, Brahmastra generated Rs 5.85 crore, and again Rs 6.30 crore on Sunday. The Monday had a drop to Rs 1.85 crore, and thus in total Brahmastra made Rs 22.80 crore in four days of its third week in cinemas, taking the overall domestic total to Rs 252.80 crore!
Chup: Revenge of the Artist Box Office
Chup: Revenge of the Artist was another noteworthy Hindi release of last week. Directed by veteran R Balki and featuring Sunny Deol, Dulquer Salmaan, Shreya Dhanwanthary and Pooja Bhatt, this psychological crime thriller film is about a serial killer who targets film critics. Several free shows were hosted and created positive word of mouth for a relatively unknown film. National Cinema Day again came to the rescue and the film opened strong with Rs 3.06 crore in limited screens. On Saturday, it generated Rs 2.07 crore and the Sunday was at Rs 2.25 crore. Monday, as usual saw the drop to Rs 75 lakh. The film made a respectable Rs 8.13 crore in its first four days, which is quite modest.
Dhokha: Round D Corner Box Office
Another low-budget Hindi release is Dhokha: Round D Corner featuring R Madhavan, Aparshakti Khurana, Darshan Kumar and Khushali Kumar. This crime thriller is directed by The Big Bull fame Kookie Gulati and it got publicity only because it was releasing on National Cinema Day with a ticket price of Rs 75/-. No other means of film marketing or PR were visible for Dhokha. It generated Rs 1.15 crore on Friday, Rs 50 lakh on Saturday and Rs 65 lakh on Sunday. It's first Monday saw a huge drop to Rs 15 lakh. In four days, it collected Rs 2.45 crore, which is a sheer disappointment.
Avatar Box Office
Avatar, the Hollywood superhit of 2009 is again re-released across the globe in this week and the response is overwhelming. It's a built-up for its highly anticipated sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water, which is releasing on 16 December. Like in the US, the numbers here are also strong. It made 2.2 crores on Friday, 1.85 crores on Saturday and 1.60 crores on Sunday. It generated 6.65 crores in 3 days which is huge knowing the fact that it was seen by majority of moviegoers. It had made more than Rs 100 crore back when it was released, a big amount then. This James Cameron miracle is one of the finest films of recent times. Screening predominantly in IMAX and 3D versions, this strong response is just the precursor to what will follow on 16 December for the Avatar sequel.
Krishna Vrinda Vihari Box Office
Another fresh Telugu release is Krishna Vrinda Vihari which is romantic comedy featuring Naga Shaurya and Shirley Setia. Directed by Anish R Krishna, this slick comedy is praised by reviews, and the box office response was modest. It generated Rs 1.45 crore on Friday, Rs 2.30 crore on Saturday, Rs 2.40 crore on Sunday and Rs 0.75 crore on Monday. Overall, Krishna Vrinda Vihari made Rs 6.9 crore in four days and going by the word of mouth, it's more likely to gain stability in the coming days.