A still of ‘Thugs of Hindostan’.
A still of ‘Thugs of Hindostan’.

Bollywood throws up disastrous weekend in the run-up to Diwali

While Yash Raj Films' action adventure 'Thugs of Hindostan' is expected to set the cash registers ringing for the big festive weekend, a bunch of small films hitting screens in the meantime has not done well at the box office

New Delhi: The clutter of releases is not helping Bollywood’s box office business in the run-up to the big Diwali weekend. While Yash Raj Films’ action adventure Thugs of Hindostan is expected to set the cash registers ringing for the big festive weekend, a bunch of small films hitting screens in the meantime has not done well at the box office.

Crime drama Baazaar starring Saif Ali Khan emerged the best out of a bad bunch at weekend collections of 10.75 crore, growing from 2.75 crore on Friday to 3.75 crore and 4.25 crore on Saturday and Sunday, respectively.

Baazaar had an extremely poor start in the morning shows, but picked up pace during the course of the day, has fared much better than the recent Saif Ali Khan-starrers with Mumbai circuit driving the business," tweeted trade analyst Taran Adarsh. “Needs to regain lost ground by scoring higher numbers on day three and also on weekdays."

Trade website Box Office India pointed out that Khan’s erstwhile multiplex charm is not working anymore. While older films like Love Aaj Kal and Cocktail may not have found takers pan-India but catered well to city audiences, more recent movies like Chef, Kaalakaandi and Baazaar seem to have zero appeal even for metro viewers. Baazaar, with its heavy use of Gujarati, has found low acceptance in the Delhi, Punjab and north India circuit with Mumbai scoring the best in the country at collections of 1.25 crore.

Other releases of the week, however, fared even worse. Sharman Joshi-starrer Kaashi-In Search of Ganga was second in line after Baazaar at 70 lakh while Rajkummar Rao and Nargis Fakhri’s 5 Weddings made 50 lakh. Other washouts of the week include Neil Nitin Mukesh-starrer Dassehra, village drama Gaon-The Village No More, Poonam Pandey’s The Journey of Karma and comedy drama Chal Jaa Bapu that earned 2 lakh, lakh, 5 lakh and 1 lakh, respectively, on their opening day.

Apart from comedy drama Badhaai Ho and mystery thriller Andhadhun, both Ayushmann Khurrana-starrers, that had made 82.33 crore and 62.91 crore at last count, Bollywood hasn’t had the best run-up to Diwali. Other disasters of the month include Salman Khan’s production Loveyatri, Kajol-starrer Helicopter Eela, horror flick Tumbbad, Govinda-starrer FryDay and romantic drama Jalebi that made 2.52 crore, 4.29 crore, 7.87 crore, 1.52 crore and 2.34 crore in lifetime box office collections, respectively.

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