HOUSEFULL was meant to open big, yet the results have come as a surprise. For, no one expected the business to be so huge, even on weekdays. With tremendous hype and a massive star cast as its trump cards, an earth-shattering opening weekend was inevitable. But there was unprecedented opposition from a quarter: A few critics/reviewers. Sajid had gone on record to state that he believes in the verdict of the aam junta, not critics. Sometime back, he even poked fun at prominent critics [including this writer] by singing a qawwali at an awards' function, ridiculing them for having gone wrong with their opinions on movies in the past. I am told, Sajid spoke against the critics at several press conferences.
To rub salt to their wounds, Sajid decided against holding the press screening of his much-awaited film and that upset a lot of media persons, who are used to watching movies a day or two before its worldwide release. The two Sajids [Nadiadwala, Khan] had just two screenings of the film. On Sunday [for the cast and crew] and Thursday [a night before its global release] at Yash Raj, which was attended by their close friends and a few members of the cast [Riteish, Deepika, Jiah, Chunkey].
Expectedly, HOUSEFULL opened to an overwhelming response and even though few critics wrote off the film, it didn't make an iota of a difference to its business. The audience thronged the theatres for various reasons, but a prime reason was the dearth of qualitative entertainment since the past few weeks. They were starved for a hardcore masala film and HOUSEFULL seemed to fill the void.
Since the onset of IPL, a number of movies had released in rapid succession, but none that could draw the audiences to cineplexes. HOUSEFULL was a biggie with a massive cast and coupled with the entertainment factor, was the right venture to lure audiences back to theatres, across the length and breadth of the nation. And that's what happened!
Despite mixed reactions to the film [some loved it, some hated it], the opening weekend numbers of HOUSEFULL were humungous and the weekdays have been rock-steady as well. Of course, like it happens with the biggest of films, which are released extensively, there has been a slight decline from Monday onwards, but the film is likely to have a super Week 1, in terms of numbers.
As things stand today, HOUSEFULL is a success story. How big a success, only time will tell.