Salman Khan’s Race 3 expected to have a Rs 100 cr weekend, make new box office records
The business of big Bollywood releases is mostly restricted to the first three days of their release. It stretches for another four days if the content gets the audience talking. It doesn’t happen regularly though.
But the promoters of Salman Khan’s Race 3 are determined to beat the existing system. The film looks like a commercial success even before its release. Reports say that the satellite and digital rights of the film are sold for a whopping Rs 130 crore. This is a price unheard of for any Indian film; even Salman’s previous film Tiger Zinda Hai could only fetch Rs Rs 65 crore.
Film trade analyst Atul Mohan puts everything in perspective. He says, “At the end of the day, it’s the content that does the talking, but one thing is for sure that Race 3 is going to get a big opening. I am expecting a Rs 100 crore plus figure in first three days. The opening day collection should be in the range of Rs 30-35 crore. After that, it will be all about content. Tiger Zinda Hai sustained the momentum even after the first weekend. Tubelight’s graph drastically came down after three days.”
Watch: Business prediction for Race 3
He explains how the screen count of a film impacts its business, “Race 3 is going to be one of the widest releases Bollywood has ever seen. The makers are looking at approximately 4200 screens in India, may be more than that.”
Online booking website BookMyShow also reported that advance bookings of the Salman Khan-starrer are soaring. While the advance sales opened on Sunday in a very limited manner in a few theatres, the sales really picked up on Tuesday.
The massive success of Aamir Khan’s Dangal and a couple of other films has given the producers the confidence to reach out to new markets. Even a relatively smaller success would contribute significantly to the final tally of a film. Mohan adds, “Bollywood films are getting far more number of screens in the USA and the UK. A few years back, we were allotted 150 odd screens in the USA and 50-75 screens in Britain. It’s almost double now.”
He continues, “Some new markets have also opened up. Last few films of Salman Khan films like Tiger Zinda Hai and Tubelight opened really well. He has become one of the darlings of the overseas markets. Hindi movies are looking beyond the Middle East, Australia and New Zealand. New areas like Malaysia, Singapore and European countries like Germany and Norway are fetching really good money now.”
In a nutshell, the strategy to publicise a Salman Khan film beyond the usual limits is working just fine for the promoters. Traditionally, a Salman film has worked during major festive seasons.
Films such as Bodyguard, Ek The Tiger, Kick, Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Sultan worked beyond imagination on and around Eid. Last year’s Tubelight is the only exception in this regard, but the high publicity cost was believed to be the major reason behind its poor performance at the ticket window.
Despite this, the team of Race 3 decided to go all out on promotion. However, they did a smart thing by not stretching it beyond one month. The trailer of the film released on May 15, a month before the film’s release. And then they cracked the biggest satellite and digital deal in the history of Bollywood. They always knew what they were getting into.
Anil Sharma, who directed Salman in Veer (2010), says such emphasis of promoting a superstar’s film was always there. He says, “There is always a buzz around superstars’ films. It happens with the stars in all fields. There are three things that make an actor a superstar – good films, attitude and screen presence -- Salman has all three.”
Sharma says the superstars have traditionally driven the business. He adds, “It was always like that. When Amitabh Bachchan was the superstar, things revolved around him. The same was the case with Dharmendra. Be it Rajesh Khanna or Shah Rukh Khan, the credit always went to the stars. This is, in fact, why they become stars.”
In the current scenario, all Race 3 has to do is to hold its ground for the first three days to become a hugely profitable venture. With no big release till Ranbir Kapoor’s Sanju on June 29, Race 3 is likely to enjoy a free run. Just imagine what it can achieve if there is a positive word of mouth around it!
Directed by Remo D’Souza, Race 3 also features Bobby Deol, Jacqueline Fernandez, Anil Kapoor, Daisy Shah and Saqib Saleem in important roles. It will hit the screens on June 15, 2018.
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