Enough has been spoken and written about the clash, merits, screen count and the audience feedback to the big ticket releases this Diwali, JAB TAK HAI JAAN and SON OF SARDAAR. While both seem to be faring very well at the ticket counters, the question that crosses your mind is, was the clash necessary? There's no denying that two biggies can, and have, co-existed in the Diwali week, but one cannot turn a blind eye to the fact that the footfalls get divided when there's more than one biggie eyeing the discerning viewer. In this case, the vicious fight for theatres/show timings has also left a sour taste, with the industry being divided over the thorny issue.
The silver lining is, the two films have raked in a big, fat total in their first three days [Tuesday to Thursday]. While the Thursday numbers are still being compiled as I pen this piece, both JAB TAK HAI JAAN [Tue 15.23 cr, Wed 19.54 cr. Total: 34.77 cr nett] and SON OF SARDAAR [Tue 10.72 cr, Wed 16.21 cr. Total: 26.93 cr nett] have found their share of audience in various circuits. It's crystal clear by now that JAB TAK HAI JAAN is dominating at multiplexes, with Mumbai, Delhi, Bengal and Mysore circuits adding power to the earnings, while SON OF SARDAAR has emerged the first choice in circuits where single screens lend force -- Delhi-U.P., Punjab, C.P., C.I., Rajasthan and Bihar. Also, parts of Mumbai circuit [Maharashtra and Gujarat] are yielding good returns for SON OF SARDAAR.
Now that the weekend has begun, it will be interesting to see how JAB TAK HAI JAAN and SON OF SARDAAR fare during the next three days [Friday to Sunday]. The business is expected to escalate from Friday evening onwards and reach the pinnacle on Sunday. Thanks to the 6-day weekend [Tuesday to Sunday], it should prove to be the biggest and best Diwali for the film industry, with both JAB TAK HAI JAAN and SON OF SARDAAR achieving the targets set out by the respective producers/Studios.
The real test, of course, will begin from Monday onwards. The Diwali celebrations and the long holiday period will come to a close on Sunday. The weekdays, therefore, will be the real indicator of where the two biggies stand.