All the 4 Bollywood /Indie releases this week have failed to open decently. In fact the collection for some of these films—and we won’t name them here for boxoffice-shaming—has been so abysmal that theatres are planning to withdraw the screenings post the weekend
A top personnel from a leading multiplex chain says this was apocalypse week at the boxoffice. “Ram GopalVarma’s Veerappan, Anu Menon’s Waiting, Pawan Kriplani’s Phobia and some oddity named Frederick(bad times at the boxoffice for Catholic dudes , like David and Rocky Handsome) , all opened to near-empty houses.Of course none of these had any face value. RGV has not seen the ‘s’ of success for years. The other films are by unknown directors. Of least interest to the public.”
Significantly two of this week’s release Waiting and Phobia got excellent reviews. But there was no growth in the collections by Friday evening, as expected. While two of the four releases were male-centric stories, the other two had very strong parts for women. Kalki and Radhika Apte were praised to the skies by critics for their strong parts and able performances in Waiting and Phobia.
“But these actresses have no boxoffice value .Waiting and Phobia are good films. They’d have worked better with a big heroine like Deepika Padukone or Priyanka Chopra,” comments Roshan Singh ,a prominent exhibitor from Bihar who adds that Ram Gopal Varma’s Veerappan would have worked better if Zareen Khan’s item song Khallas had not gone missing from the film.
“There was a sense of disappointment on seeing the main promotional song missing in Veerappan, like what the audience felt when the Jabra song was kept out of the Shah Rukh Khan starrer Fan,” says Atul Mohan who feels the ticket pricing is the main culprit. “Lack of face value, bad content, low buzz. Who would go for such high admission rates to watch non-starcast film?”
Critic Raja Sen feels it’s quantity that quelled quality. “ I think the fact that there are too many small releases splits up the viewers. Forced to choose, without knowing much about the film’s and the actors, they’ve stayed away but if Waiting and Phobia have good word of mouth, they can surely recover their costs.”