Sorry, folks. Despite being almost universally trashed Kaal is officially a 'hit'. Made with a budget of Rs 13 crores, Kaal released with 400 prints and a 90% occupancy on the opening weekend.
A back-of-the-envelope calculation shows the Rs 13 crores could easily have been recovered on this one weekend alone given that:
400 screens X 9 shows over Fri-Sun X Rs 100 average ticket price (multiplexes charge more while others charge less) X 360 (assuming average hall size is 400 and there is 90% occupancy)
Bingo - you have Rs 12.96 crores.
I saw the movie on a Tuesday evening and the hall was pretty full which is great because whatever audience comes in after the first 3 days is pure profit.
The latest India Today calls it the 'popcorn' movie trend - films specially conceived and designed for the youth which, today, is the highest spending demographic.
'An Adlabs multiplex study says 50% if all footfalls belong to those between 18 and 30 years while a Shringar cinemas study last year showed that the 18-35 age segment is the biggest spender'.
So, films are being made to cater to this audience - right after Kaal came Kitne Kool Hain Hum which also, despite ok-ok reviews is being called a hit.
Given the sad state of Bollywood even OK movies have a chance at the box office if they can create enough hype to get in the opening weekend audience. After that, if the film is bad it will quickly tank. If it's good - like Black and Page 3 - it goes the opposite way: Up!
Young people - and even older folks, families - are going to the movies because it is 'something to do'. In this country we don't have baseball games or ice hockey or any other weekend sporting events. We don't have a large pubbing or clubbing culture. We don't take off to jet ski or go sailing on weekends.
Leave aside a few of the superrich who go to their farm houses and lie in hammocks. The only thing yuppie types can do to relax and unwind is eat, shop or watch movies. And you don't have much choice. Asked to choose between Lucky, Waqt and Kaal - I chose Kaal. At least it had John Abraham.
Young people often go to watch movies despite knowing they're bad because:
- Girlfriend ya boyfriend ke saath kahin jaana hai
- Group mein do log keh rahe hain - chalo dekh lete hain
- Even bad movies can be enjoyed by making fun of them
Either way K.Jo and SRK ain't complaining!