Not sweet, dry November: Why it was the dullest month for Bollywood this year

  • Jigar Shah, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Dec 03, 2014 09:37 IST

Even though November witnessed eclectic mix of films lined up for release including Parineeti Chopra-Ranveer Singh-Govinda-starrer Kill Dil, Saif Ali Khan-Ileana D'Cruz-starrer Happy Ending and Emraan Hashmi-Kangana Ranaut-starerr Ungli, none of them made a mark at the box office.

Defying all predictions and expectations, the month only resulted in disappointing outings at the box office, as most of the films failed to pull in the crowds. So much so that trade analysts are calling November one of the dullest periods for Bollywood this year.

"The accumulated loss suffered by films such as The Shaukeens, Kill Dil, Happy Ending and Ungli in November comes to around Rs 100 crores," informs trade analyst Amod Mehra. Specifying the reason, he adds, "The films that released this month were not only badly made, but also badly marketed. Ungli released after a long delay and Happy Ending, according to me, was a mistake, as a younger cast would have been better suited for the film." The film stars Saif Ali Khan in the lead role.

Watch Ranveer, Govinda and Ali Zafar groove in Kill Dil title track?

While the lack of good content is being considered one major reason for the dull state of the box office, some also feel that it is the limited spending power of the audience that could be responsible for the low turnout in the theatres. Exhibitor Akshaye Rathi puts things into perspective, saying, "Except the stock market, all other sectors have been going through a bit of a slump. There isn’t any liquidity in the market for people to go out and spend money."

Mehra seconds Rathi’s point, but gives it a spin. "Money is an issue, yes, but I also feel that post-Diwali, exams in schools and colleges have also thinned the crowd. In fact, a leading multiplex chain is even planning to reduce the price of their tickets to draw in audiences in this bad phase," says Amod.

Meanwhile, according to film business analyst Girish Johar, the cumulative box-office revenue of just Rs 100 crore for November, has been the lowest since February 2012, which presented a cumulative revenue of Rs 95 crores back then. "This is shocking as there were some good releases lined up for this month. But nothing worked," says Girish.

So, will December be any different? Mehra predicts, "There are two big films releasing this month — one is Ajay Devgn-starrer Action Jackson and the other is Aamir’s PK. But till the holidays start, I don’t see any major changes happening at the box office."

Girish, however, sees light at the end of the tunnel, saying, "Both the films are eagerly awaited. Let’s hope they will be able to salvage the situation."

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