Friday 2 November 2007

Box office analysis

First weekend performance of latest release

Yet again box office has taken an expected route as was predicted last week. JAB WE MET was always meant to take the best opening, NO SMOKING was bound to be either too good or too bad at the box office, MUMBAI SALSA was supposed to be behind in the race while BAL GANESH was always a non-starter! What transpired in the weekend gone by followed the exact route as JAB WE MET took a good opening on Friday only to turn very good and excellent on Saturday and Sunday.

Imtiaz Ali's work has been loved by all and there is not a single soul who has been heard saying anything negative about the film. Shahid and Kareena have come up with their career best act which has been lapped up to such an extent by the audience that repeat audience has already started making beelines.

As of today, the film is a guaranteed hit and it only has to be seen how far it goes from here. Indications are that the film would be continued into second week with same number of print count (at places even more) to en-cash the maximum moolah before OM SHANTI OM and SAAWARIYA strike on 9th November. Still, such are the strengths of the film that there would be no surprises if JAB WE MET turns out to be one more choice available for viewers this Diwali!

NO SMOKING - Aah, there have been hundreds of gigabytes already spent in reviews, blogs, forums, articles etc. and the majority have conveyed their thoughts that the film was too bizarre to be comprehended and a pain to watch. As stated in my last week's column, the film could have gone either way! Unfortunately for Anurag Kashyap, the film has gone the way with which he won't be too pleased. The film crashed after the first day itself with all around negative reports. NO SMOKING doesn't have any chances to survive at the box office and would be a two week runner before biggies arrive. Now that's unfortunate for John since just like Shahid and Kareena in JAB WE MET, even he had come up with his career best performance in NO SMOKING.

With all talks centered on JAB WE MET getting all around positive response and NO SMOKING just the opposite, not many were actually even aware about the release of MUMBAI SALSA. The result was that the opening was quite poor! Now that's sad since this Manoj Tyagi film is well made and has all in it to woo the urban audience. Cheeky and naughty with real life scenarios unfolded through the screenplay, the film made for a good viewing but unfortunately didn't find many takers. One expects though that on DVD circuits, it will find the audience it deserves.

So what happened to BAL GANESHA in the meanwhile? A poor opening that was further marred by poor publicity and promotional campaign. Expect the film's DVDs to land in town soon!

Last week's movies

SPEED is a trade disaster. The film neither took an opening nor garnered any word of mouth. Result was that after a 1 crore opening, the film has simply vanished. The collections were unmentionable all over with Mumbai being best at just 20 lakhs. Though the makers are still promoting the film reasonably well on satellite medium, one wonders which are the screens that are playing the film in the second week? Expect the film's DVDs to be out in a fortnight's time!

From the past

With SPEED being the sole release of the week gone by, BHOOL BHULAIYAA enjoyed it's #1 position for second week in succession. In spite of a huge 26 crores opening, the film fell by only 40% and brought home another 15.5 crores hence enabling the film to cross 41 crores mark in two weeks flat. Mumbai collections were greater than 2.5 crores, Delhi was superb at 1.5 crores while NCR brought in another 75 lakhs plus. The film has sustained quite well at other centers of the country too, whether big or small, which has resulted in a hit status for it already. While a 50 crores total is pretty much in sight within a fortnight with a superhit status on it's way, it has to be seen if it would be able to survive the 9th November challenge!

LAAGA CHUNARI MEIN DAAG did see a fall but still not as bad as one would have expected considering the negativity around the film from most quarters. After a near 12 crores first week, the film saw the collections sliding to 5.5 crores with around 60% drop. However, if one looks in absolute terms, 5.5 crores is certainly a miserly second total for a Yash Raj Film and doesn't augur well with their star production house status. Particularly big cities haven't been too kind with Mumbai falling from 2.5 crores to 80 lakhs and Delhi from 1.5 crores to 55 lakhs.

At 18 crores, LAAGA CHUNARI MEIN DAAG has now netted even lesser than JHOOM BARABAR JHOOM and suffers a flop status at the box office. Yash Raj Films would now have their eyes set on AAJA NACHLE to end the year on a happy note even though 2008 beginning looks quite promising with TASHAN being their first offering of the season.

In the future

With all eyes on OM SHANTI OM and SAAWARIYA arriving on 9th November, no film is releasing this weekend. A wise move because even if they would have been released, they wouldn't have survived beyond a week due to the two biggies occupying majority of screens across all major multiplexes/single screen theaters.

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