Mumbai: Iron Man Tony Stark, played by Robert Downey Jr. , has set cash registers ringing at Indian movie halls in its opening weekend. The third instalment of the superhero film— Iron Man 3 —has garnered around Rs. 30 crore in its first three days, according to executives in the film trade.
Iron Man 3 is the second-highest Hollywood grosser in India in its opening weekend. It has ousted the 23rd Bond movie Skyfall from its No. 2 position. Skyfall, which released in November, earned around Rs.27.5 crore in its opening weekend, according to Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. The Amazing Spider-Man—released in June 2012—remains the highest Hollywood grosser in India with box-office collections of around Rs.34 crore in its first three days, according to Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc.
“On Friday, the occupancy for Iron Man 3 was around 70% across theatres, the occupancy increased substantially over the next two days (Saturday and Sunday) to over 90%,” said Thomas D’Souza, head of programming at Cinemax India Ltd, now owned by PVR Ltd.
Disney UTV released Iron Man 3 across 1,100 screens on Friday, a week before its US release. The movie is dubbed in Hindi, Telugu and Tamil, which has helped to boost collections. Disney UTV declined to comment.
“The dubbed version of Iron Man 3 has helped gain wide acceptance in small towns, which has contributed to the earnings from the box-office. As a result the response has been encouraging, not just in the metros but also from smaller markets,” said Rahul Singh, senior vice-president, operations, PVR Ltd.
The first instalment of the movie franchise, based on a comic book series published by Marvel Comics, in 2008 earned around Rs.11 crore from the Indian box office while 2010’s Iron Man 2 grossed about Rs.17 crore.
Released in July 2012, The Dark Knight Rises generated nearly Rs.25 crore in its opening weekend in India. Mission Impossible-4: Ghost Protocol earned around Rs.24 crore in India in its opening weekend in December 2011, industry experts said. James Cameron’s 2009 film Avatar earned around Rs.22 crore in its first weekend; the 2009 film 2012 earned around Rs.21 crore and The Avengers around Rs.18 crore when it was released in April 2012.
Iron Man 3 is the first Hollywood film to have 15 brand tie-ups for merchandising in India, accompanying its release, Mint reported on 24 April.