The sun is shining bright on Bollywood. The past few weeks have witnessed a number of films opening extremely well on the crucial Friday and packing a solid punch in the opening weekend and opening week. The flying start of films like DELHI BELLY and MURDER 2, both certified 'Adults' by censors, only goes to prove that the volume of business has increased by leaps and bounds. While DELHI BELLY grossed superb figures at plexes, MURDER 2 is very good at plexes, but is setting new records at single screens.
Just two weeks ago, I wrote about sequels attracting healthy footfalls, depending on how strong the recall value is of the first part. Though MURDER had opened seven years ago, it continues to remain fresh in public memory to this date. Also, I strongly feel that Emraan Hashmi enjoys tremendous popularity amongst youth. If you go through the business of his films, most of them had been successful in attracting ample footfalls on their opening day. Besides, the Bhatts-Emraan combo is special. Though their last film didn't work at the ticket counters, you cannot deny that it's one of the most successful combinations today.
Sex sells and so does horror. HAUNTED 3D proved it. RAGINI MMS also proved it. Now MURDER 2, which has scary moments aplenty [not the horror variety], proves that it's a lethal combination that lures audiences in hordes. The release period has a lot to do with a film's success and the lack of a strong opponent also did the trick. Though, I must add, that DELHI BELLY did give MURDER 2 stiff competition at big city plexes.
MURDER 2 is Emraan Hashmi's biggest opener [as solo hero] and is Bhatt Brothers' biggest opener so far. The industry was speculating that MURDER 2 would collect a maximum of Rs 13 cr to Rs 15 cr in its opening weekend, while the Week 1 total will be maximum Rs 20 cr. But by collecting Rs 22.35 cr nett in its opening weekend, MURDER 2 has proved all calculations wrong.
The Bhatts, who sold the India and Overseas theatrical rights of the film to Ponty Chadha, had retained Satellite and Music Rights, besides distributing the film in Mumbai territory. What luck! The Bhatts are going to mint money like never before. Looking at the price it was sold at, Ponty Chadha too would make good profits and the sub-distributors, who acquired the film for fantastic prices, have a clear winner on hand as well. This one's a lottery!
The second release, CHILLAR PARTY, was never expected to start with a bang, although it had two powerful names backing it - UTV and Salman Khan. UTV gave it a limited release [limited screens, limited shows] and though the Friday numbers ranged from poor to very poor, the business did pick up on Saturday and Sunday. It's a deserving case of tax-exemption and I hope that films like CHILLAR PARTY are patronised and encouraged by the paying public.