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Home / Industry / Media /  Sooryavanshi, Annaatthe light up Diwali box office

NEW DELHI : Movies released to coincide with Diwali notched up near-record collections during the holiday weekend, bringing much-needed respite to India’s theatrical movie business that has been reeling from the pandemic-induced upheaval.

With two-day collections of around 50 crore, Akshay Kumar’s action drama Sooryavanshi is looking to end its opening weekend with box-office receipts of over 75 crore, according to trade website Box Office India.

“Sooryavanshi roars on day one, revives business, records excellent numbers, despite 50% occupancy in the largest market Maharashtra. Day two is super strong. Has the potential to grow over the weekend. Cinemas and cine-goers are back," trade analyst Taran Adarsh had tweeted soon after opening day, which saw several cinemas across the country open doors to patrons after 18 months. Box Office India said collections in different states ranged from good to extraordinary depending upon the individual market, but Mumbai and Delhi-Uttar Pradesh drove growth for the film on day one, clocking 10 crore and 5.5 crore, respectively.

Overall, the action spectacle proved the second-highest opening-day earner for Kumar at 26.29 crore after his science fiction drama Mission Mangal that had made 28.45 crore in 2019. Box Office India said Sooryavanshi could have easily beaten the older film had it not been for continuing restrictions in some states. For director Rohit Shetty, it is the fourth-highest opener of all time after Singham Returns ( 31.68 crore), Chennai Express ( 30.48 crore) and Golmaal Again ( 30.10 crore).

To be sure, Reliance Entertainment, co-producers of Sooryavanshi, and top multiplex chains such as PVR Cinemas and INOX Leisure Ltd were yet to decide on revenue-sharing terms for the film until late Thursday night, delaying booking that should have begun last weekend.

However, ticketing site BookMyShow said the film had sold 700,000 tickets on the platform in less than 24 hours since pan-India advance sales opened late at night on 4 November. The movie hit a peak of 21 tickets sold per second on 6 November, making for the highest ever peak for a Hindi movie on the platform. The all-time high for peak sales per second on BookMyShow is held by Baahubali 2: The Conclusion and Avengers: Endgame, both of which were dubbed and released in multiple languages. As of Sunday morning, the platform sold 1.3 million tickets

Meanwhile, Rajinikanth’s action film Annaatthe is also on a record-breaking spree, especially in the home state, Tamil Nadu, where it emerged as the highest opening day earner ever with collections of 24 crore. Overall, the film made 30 crore across India on day one and is expected to zoom past the 100 crore mark worldwide by the end of the weekend. BookMyShow said it had crossed the one million ticket mark on the platform, becoming the first film to do so after the second covid wave.

“We were very optimistic on the festive quarter that had a slew of blockbusters lined up to hit the screens across Hollywood, Hindi and regional cinema this Diwali. But Annaatthe and Sooryavanshi have been crashing records and setting the cash registers ringing from the go, bringing some much-awaited respite to the film fraternity in India. The robust performance of the two on BookMyShow has proven to be the writing on the wall, as far as the theatrical and entertainment industry’s recovery goes. The two movies, along with Eternals, are showing great strength across all demographics and audience preferences, with users appreciating the content," Ashish Saksena, chief operating officer, cinemas at BookMyShow, said in a statement. Marvel offering Eternals had made 7.35 crore in India on day one.

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