Till a few months ago, all of us were under the impression that the spending capacity of the common man restricts him/her from watching multiple films in a week/month. The aam aadmi adheres to a budget and restricts himself/herself to only those movies that catches his/her attention. Well, this viewpoint has gone for a toss after the spate of successes we have witnessed in the last few weeks.
First DOUBLE DHAMAAL fetched a flying start. Then DELHI BELLY. Then MURDER 2. Then ZINDAGI NA MILEGI DOBARA. Now SINGHAM. A film remains on the top slot for a maximum of one/two weeks, only to be overthrown by another film in the subsequent week. Which is great, in my opinion. Records are meant to be broken and if movie business continues to perform the way it is performing right now, we will soon revert back to the golden era of 1960s and 1970s, when the Hit:Flop ratio was 70:30.
I genuinely feel that you cannot predict the business of any film prior to its release. Who would've ever thought DOUBLE DHAMAAL would fetch a mind-blowing start? Who would've ever thought DELHI BELLY would rule the domestic as well as international box-office in days to come? Who would've ever thought MURDER 2 would emerge one of the biggest openers of the year [and the biggest hit of Bhatts/Emraan?]. Who would've ever thought ZINDAGI NA MILEGI DOBARA would pack a super initial, compensating the loss of business from single screens with that of plexes? No one, I repeat no one, can predict the business of movies or, for that matter, what figure a film would fetch in its opening weekend, prior to its release. We are in the most unpredictable business and like I always say, that's the beauty of this business. It surprises you week after week.
Now SINGHAM. Yes, we all know by now that its release was uncertain at plexes till Thursday night. Yes, we also know that its business got affected in Karnataka. Despite that SINGHAM roared louder on Friday [Rs 9.03 cr], remained static on Saturday, though the business fell in some circuits [Rs 9.67 cr], but shot upwards on Sunday [Rs 12.37 cr], taking its opening weekend total to Rs 31.07 cr nett. Which, to put things in the right perspective, is the No 2 opener of 2011, after READY.
Let's not compare it with DABANGG and READY. Sure, SINGHAM is a terrific entertainer, but what it lacks is a hit musical score that works big time, which adds to the repeat viewing of the film. Recall the contribution of 'Munni' and 'Mast Mast Do Nain' [DABANGG] or 'Charater Dheela' and 'Dhinka Chika' [READY] and you will agree that star power + great masala + hit music = Winner at the box-office.
SINGHAM is ruling the single screens and like WANTED, which worked big time at single screens or ZINDAGI NA MILEGI DOBARA, which worked exceedingly well at plexes [still working], the film is expected to pack a solid total at the end of Week 1. In fact, looking at the trends, SINGHAM is likely to dominate the single screens in days to come. The absence of a major release, till AARAKSHAN, should only add to its revenue.
How long will the winning phase in Bollywood continue? I think the prospects will only get better in the forthcoming weeks with biggie after biggie hitting the marquee. The best thing is that diverse genres are being lapped up in a big way and the audience is in a mood to vote from their wallet. Let's pray this dream run continues!