With the World Cup fever catching up with the audiences, theatres in the city are showing a noticeable drop in the box-office collections. The last week has been a rather disappointing one for the distributors and exhibitors of the three releases, particularly BAAZ and SATTA, which opened to a dull response almost everywhere.
According to Manoj Desai, Executive Director of G-7, the response to the three releases has been depressing, though KHUSHI did open to a decent response at some theatres in the city, but the collections dropped sharply after the first three days.
Rakesh Sippy, the Mumbai distributor of KHUSHI, endorses Desai's point of view about the World Cup creating a sharp dent in the collections. “The evening shows have been badly hit,” he says, adding that the business of all films is likely to take a beating in the coming few weeks.
Sippy says his distribution office had no option but to release KHUSHI days before the World Cup. “We were planning to hit the theatres on January 31. It was an ideal release date, without any opposition whatsoever, and we would've had two whole weeks to exploit the film. But the C.C.C.A. strike forced us to postpone the release to February 7,” he says.
'VALENTINE DAYS' NOT ON VALENTINE'S DAY
Love is in the air and Valentine's Day has just passed by, but producer Sumeer Sabharwal [Dimppy] has been unable to cash on the Valentine's Day fever. Dimppy's VALENTINE DAYS, scheduled for release on February 14, will now hit the theatres on February 28. “I was forced to postpone the release because of a technical snag,” he says.
Interestingly, he has no regrets about the decision. “It would've been good if the film had released on Valentine's Day. But I don't think it really makes a difference. In any case, the film is called VALENTINE DAYS, which implies that once you are in love, every day is a Valentine's Day,” he says with a smile.
Dimppy has also decided to release the film at select multiplexes only, besides coming out with a handful number of prints of the Hindi version. “I am planning to have only 2-3 prints of the Hindi version, one in Bihar and two in Delhi. I want the film to be essentially viewed as an English film,” he says.
G.S. GETS SET FOR ITS INTERNATIONAL EPIC
A number of promising projects are being planned, some of them with massive budgets. Besides the Bharat Shah-Ram Gopal Varma-Raju Patel production (being directed by Varma), there is another film with epic proportions in the planning stages, to be produced by Sohail Khan and Bunty Walia of G.S. Entertainments.
Bunty reveals that the film will be shot entirely in Hollywood. “We're planning to make RAMAYAN for the big screen. The film will be made in English, with international and Indian names heading the cast. We have almost confirmed the director [from Hollywood], but wouldn't like to reveal his name yet,” he divulges.
Currently, G.S. is also gearing up for the shooting of its Salman starrer LUCKY, to be directed by Radhika Rao and Vinay Sapru. “It will shot in a 70-day start-to-finish schedule in Russia,” Bunty divulges. The interesting part is that Adnan Sami has been signed to score the music of the film.
KHUSHI: Barring a handful of cinemas in Mumbai, the box-office collections of the film have been cold almost everywhere. The first week collections would be somewhat better in Mumbai city-suburbs, but at several centres of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, the outcome is least heartening. Delhi and Kolkata are not up to the mark as well.
BAAZ: With the film opening to a dull response, the collections did not show any improvement on the subsequent days. At several places, the collections have been shockingly low.
SATTA: Despite appreciation and favourable reviews, the film continues to perform badly at the box-office. Though Mumbai is steady, the collections at a majority of centres elsewhere are poor.