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Box office collection: Ek Villain Returns is a breath of fresh air for Bollywood after disastrous response to Shamshera

'Ek Villain Returns', starring John Abraham, Arjun Kapoor, Disha Patani and Tara Sutaria, takes a good start at the box office, with Rs 7.05 crore coming in on Day 1.

July 30, 2022 / 09:24 PM IST
Disha Patani in 'Ek Villain Returns', which made more than Rs 7 crore in ticket sales on Day 1 of its release in theatres.

Disha Patani in 'Ek Villain Returns', which made more than Rs 7 crore in ticket sales on Day 1 of its release in theatres.

It was dark clouds all around last week when Shamshera released and emerged as an undisputed disaster. Just when it seemed that it would remain the same for the next couple of weeks till Rakshabandhan and Laal Singh Chaddha arrive, the response to this Friday's release Ek Villain Returns has come as a whiff of fresh air.

The John Abraham, Arjun Kapoor, Disha Patani and Tara Sutaria starrer has taken a good start at the box office, with Rs 7.05 crore coming in on Day 1. This is the seventh-highest opener for any Bollywood film in 2022, and the opening-day collections are next only to Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 [Rs 14.11 crore], Bachchan Pandey [Rs 13.25 crore], Samrat Prithviraj [Rs 10.70 crore], Gangubai Kathiawadi [Rs 10.50 crore], Shamshera [Rs 10.25 crore] and JugJugg Jeeyo [Rs 9.28 crore]. What makes the opening even more special is the fact that the budget of Ek Villain Returns is far lower than all the other films in this list.

So far, the year has seen many similar budgeted films not taking any sort of opening at all, what with collections stuck between Rs 2 crore and Rs 4 crore. That's the reason why even with the franchise factor working in favour of this Ekta Kapoor and Bhushan Kumar production, most were pegging the film to take a Rs 5-6 crore start at best. However, somehow many experts ignored the fact that director Mohit Suri has a loyal market for the genre of films that he attempts and even in the pre-pandemic period, his Malang had taken a start of Rs 6.71 crore.

Malang had Aditya Roy Kapur and Disha Patani in the lead and had closed at Rs 58.99 crore. Today, the times are different, and this kind of total is rarer. Still, given the kind of entertainment quotient that Ek Villain Returns has for the gentry and even a segment of the multiplex audiences, a total in excess of Rs 50 crore is a given, and anything over and above is going to be an added bonus. Since there is no new film arriving in the coming week, it would be an open field ahead for the musical suspense thriller to go ahead and collect more.

None of this could help Shamshera, though, which has done very poorly at the box office and closed its first week at Rs 40.45 crore. It started badly [Rs 10.25 crore], couldn't grow at all over the weekend [Rs 31.75 crore] and then crashed completely during the weekdays. The story has only worsened in the second weekend, with Friday collections going below the Rs 1 crore mark, hence indicating a crash of over 90 percent. The Ranbir Kapoor starrer will likely fall short of Rs 45 crore in lifetime earnings.

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It would be interesting to see which Bollywood film scores a half century or more on opening day next, to challenge Thugs of Hindostan which had done Rs 50.75 crore of business on its first day [November 8, 2018].

Not that this isn't possible since South import KGF - Chapter 2 did collect Rs 53.95 crore on its opening day just a few months back, which means audiences are indeed willing to step out of their homes to catch a film in theatres if it's truly interesting. However, for that there needs to be something truly spectacular and Bollywood would need to deliver a big film which is indeed worthy of the hype.
Joginder Tuteja is a trade expert and film critic, and loves to talk and write about anything that is related to films. Views are personal.
first published: Jul 30, 2022 09:24 pm
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