There may have been quite a few Bollywood releases this year so far, but it is a bunch of Hollywood movies that have got the numbers soaring in Indian theatres. Between The Hangover Part 2, Kung Fu Panda 2 and Fast Five, the first two having released on May 26, and Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, which hit theatres on May 20, single screens and multiplexes are more than happy.
“It’s been a bonanza Hollywood week,” says Amod Mehra, film trade analyst, summing up the business that these films have done despite being released during the recently concluded Indian Premier League. “There has also been an increase in the English movie-watching audience.”
Agreeing with that thought, Adil Sheikh, general manager, G7 multiplex in Bandra, adds, “There were some small Hindi films that released this year, but they are hardly worth anything. Movies like The Hangover Part 2, Pirates… (Hindi) and Kung Fu Panda 2 have helped us recover whatever we lost.”
Though Salman Khan’s Ready has just joined the rat race, even the Anees Bazmee film has not been able to shove the above-mentioned films off their show timings. “We will continue to screen The Hangover Part 2, Pirates (Hindi) and Kung Fu Panda 2. They are still running houseful,” says Sheikh, adding that the three films have been earning collections of 70 per cent, 50 per cent and 60 per cent respectively.
Though, the success of these films isn’t necessarily attributed to the lack of good Bollywood films, Mehra does say that they all have the advantage of being ‘brands’ in themselves. “All of them are sequels of hit films, so there is a certain amount of anticipation that works in their favour,” he says.
And in that same league, June 10 will see the release of another such film —X Men: First Class. But the only worry theatre owners have is the fact that the film isn’t releasing in 3D. “It looks really good and there is a lot of buzz about it, but 3D is the flavour of the season, let’s see how it does in 2D. Also, no other big film is releasing that weekend apart from Shaitan,” says Devang Sampat, head of strategies, Cinepolis multiplex.