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Trade Espresso: Box office lull continues

The verdict on last week's Black and White is out. It has been declared a below-average earner. Vajir Singh tells more.
Hindustan Times | By Vajir Singh, Mumbai
UPDATED ON MAR 17, 2008 06:35 PM IST

It has been one of the quietest weeks in years. No movie of any consequence showed up, in a bid perhaps to avoid the school and college examination period - which keeps a large part of the youth segment away from the movies.

There was no hype around 26th July at Barista. Its poor initial collections didn't surprise anyone, including the cinema halls' ushers. An absence of pulicity and marketing guara teed its disastrous show at the cash counters.

Although made on a peanut budget, the film was a wash-out , like its theme harking back to the monsoon devastation in Mumbai.

Moreover, the film could open only in Mumbai, Rajasthan and some parts of Madhya Pradesh.

The verdict on last week's Black and White is out. It has been declared a below-average earner. Despite favourable reviews, it didn't attract ticket buyers. Saving grace: its relatively low budget for a Mukta Arts production..

Tax exemption
Surprisingly, the audience turnout at multiplexes were nothing to rave about. Now, the film has been tax-exempted in Maharashtra and Delhi. which may help in boosting its collections to a degree.

There were as many as five international releases. The dubbed version of 10,000 BC raked up good business, especialy in small towns. The original English language version didn't arouse much interest though.

The lack of releases and the tepid response to Black and White seem to have helped Ashutosh Gowariker's Jodhaa Akbar to an extent. At weekends, its collections at the multiplexes are pretty okay.

Coming up
The first quarter of the year will end after a fortnight. But there hasn't been one big bonanza hit, so far. Fingers and toes are crossed for Abbas-Mustan's Race featuring Saif Ali Khan, Akshaye Khanna, Katrina Kaif, Bipasha Basu and Anil Kapoor.

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