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Last Updated 29.03.2020 | 11:59 AM IST
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One expected more!

By Bollywood Hungama

Two observations...

Observation I: The glowing reviews by critics are important. But, film-makers will agree, the mandate by the cinema-going audience is *most* important. We make movies for them. The footfalls at plexes/single screens and the revenue accrued from ticket sales decide the fate of the movie. The audience verdict is final!

Observation II: Flashback. Almost three decades ago, ZANJEER had already released and a new superstar was 'born'. Amitabh Bachchan delivered a string of hits subsequently, but ALAAP, released during the best phase of his professional life, didn't set the box-office afire. Only goes to prove that box-office can be so unpredictable!

The above-mentioned observations hold true for SHANGHAI. The film won immense praise from critics who matter. Besides, the presence of Emraan Hashmi, considered the darling of the masses, after having delivered a string of hits, automatically made SHANGHAI special. But there was a vast difference between the business potential of an Amitabh starrer helmed by Ramesh Sippy or Manmohan Deasi and an Amitabh starrer helmed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee. Similarly, one did not expect SHANGHAI to open as huge as MURDER 2, THE DIRTY PICTURE or JANNAT 2. Even the release strategy was different, with PVR not going really wide on this one.

SHANGHAI had a lukewarm start on Friday, but picked up on Saturday and Sunday, though the growth in the business wasn't huge. The film caters to a select audience and at those properties, the escalation in business was evident. But the mass belt, which has always responded very well to Emraan Hashmi movies, gave a cold shoulder to this one. One of the reasons for the tepid start is attributed to the not-as-attractive promos. But, I guess, we start finding faults the moment a film doesn't open well.

The sole factor that goes in its favor is its economics [Rs 20.5 cr, includes P & A]. With a chunk of its investment recovered from the sale of Satellite and Audio rights and pre-sales [Rs 16.50 cr], the film should, hopefully, recover its investment. Of course, one expected more...

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