So should we celebrate? Now that the results are for all to see, is it celebration time in Bollywood? Yes, it is!
The volume of business that the two films -- OM SHANTI OM and SAAWARIYA -- did from Friday to Sunday clearly indicates that the market has grown [and continues to grow] manifold. The booty amassed by OM SHANTI OM especially proves that SRK + Diwali + big hype = big bucks!
But once the initial hype settles down, it's the content that does the talking. Let's look at what the actual scenario is, as on this dateâ€¦
OM SHANTI OM opened to huge numbers. The first weekend was incredible and post-Monday, it continues to gross 75%-85% collections. Now that's an achievement! In today's times, the actual examination begins on Monday. A fabulous start for a film that has been released with excessive prints is akin to winning half the battle, but if the film maintains the pace [40%-50% +] on weekdays [Monday to Thursday], it indicates that the film is on its way to become a big grosser.
A section of the industry was of the opinion that OM SHANTI OM might totter from Monday onwards, given the fact that too many prints were in circulation to encash on the Diwali vacations, but OM SHANTI OM continued its glorious ride on Monday [85% +], Tuesday [75% +] and Wednesday [70% +].
The guessing game has begun. Will Mumbai cross 15? Or 17? [distributorâ€™s overall share]. Will Delhi-U.P. be 10? Or 12? Or 14? What about Overseas? What will the theatrical as well as non-theatrical revenue be? Itâ€™s a tad too early to jump at figures, but one thing is crystal clear -- OM SHANTI OM ranks amongst SRKâ€™s biggest hits. The figures corroborate that, donâ€™t they?
The Lullas of Eros, who acquired the rights for a phenomenal amount, haven't stopped laughing ever since OM SHANTI OM released. Their confidence in the film paid off and how!
Now let's look at SAAWARIYA. Sanjay Leela Bhansali is a brand and coupled with the fact that it stars two star-kids and was timed during Diwali, the opening numbers were truly impressive at most places. But the reports being negative went against the film. The reactions of cinegoers on all prominent TV channels on Friday were an eye-opener. I've to admit, the common man is a much harsher critic than most critics these days.
And the cracks started showing as days progressed. While the first weekend numbers were generally good, the film fell from Monday onwards. Not just at single screens, but also at multiplexes. In fact, the negative word of mouth reflected in the box-office collections as even multiplexes came down to 20%-30% collections on weekdays. Now that's quite a fall!
SLB is going around town bad-mouthing the media for the negative reviews his film has garnered. SLB is truly a genius, a great film-maker [I maintain that, despite his caustic comments against me in a leading daily], but I'd request him to visit any movie hall close to his residence/office and check the occupancy himself.
Also, if you cannot face the heat, don't enter the kitchen. In today's times, from a car that hits the roads to a toothpaste that's launched to a dosa in a dining place -- everything gets reviewed in newspapers/TV channels/Internet. SAAWARIYA is the creation of a master film-maker and was bound to be scrutinized by the media. So why this hullabaloo?