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Thank you, Sheila?

Farah Khan’s holiday season bouquet Tees Maar Khan opens well, picks up first day footfall, say box office followers. Will the numbers sustain? Reports mixed.

bollywood Updated: Dec 25, 2010 19:53 IST
Hiren Kotwani
Hiren Kotwani
Hindustan Times

The most eagerly awaited film of the last quarter of the year, Tees Maar Khan (TMK), is out in cinemas and has opened to mixed reports. Although the reviews have not been great, trade pundits opine that the Farah Khan-directed Akshay Kumar-Katrina Kaif starrer will succeed in recovering costs and even make some money for UTV, the distributors of the film in India.

Mumbai saw the heist comedy open to at least 70 per cent occupancy, going up to 90 per cent in some theatres. Fortunately for the film, audience praise grew considerably in the afternoon shows, as Sunil Punjabi, CEO, Cinemax multiplexes, points out, “Compared to the morning shows, the response is more positive in the afternoon shows. But because it’s a big weekend and the holiday season, the first three days look safe.”

tees maar khanInterestingly, even the hike in ticket rates is not deterring the audience from buying the tickets. "The prices of tickets have gone up by 20 to 40 per cent. But despite that and the bad reviews, the opening is terrific," observes Komal Nahta, trade analyst and editor of the weekly magazine, Film Information.

Furthermore, he feels that the reviews won’t jeopardise the movie reaching the safety mark. Made at a cost of ` 50 crore with another ` 12-15 crore spent on prints and publicity, Nahta says that TMK has already earned ` 18 crore from satellite rights and ` 6 crore from the music rights. “So, bad reviews notwithstanding, TMK will recover its investment and, thanks to the opening, Sheila ki jawani number and the holiday season,” he asserts.

Delhi-based Sanjay Ghai, COO of Mukta Films Ltd, echoes the opinion. “Excluding the fees of the actors and director, Tees Maar Khan might have cost 30 crore to be made. So despite the drop on Monday, due to bad reports, the film will continue to reap the benefits of the holiday season. Besides, there’s no other film to compete with it at the box-office right now,” he says, predicting that TMK will earn half as much as Dabangg in its run across India. Vishek Chauhan, owner of Roopbani Cinema in Purnia, Bihar, says that this was expected. He states, “No other noteworthy film releasing next Friday will surely help Tees Maar Khan. Thanks to Sheila ki jawani and Vallah re vallah, the film has opened well above 70 per cent. It’s a film for the masses. What else do you expect from Farah Khan? Godfather toh banayegi nahin woh’ (She is not going to make a Godfather).”

Nahta and Ghai both feel that UTV will make money by the end of the film’s run in the cinemas. “The film has the advantage of the holiday season. And in its theatrical run in India, it will earn the distributors a share of ` 40 crore,” says Ghai. In the same vein Nahta adds, “The film will still work commercially, even if 80 per cent of the audience don’t like it, and will yield a share of ` 40 crore by the end of its run in India alone. It will easily make money.”

First Published: Dec 25, 2010 12:04 IST