Friday, June 23, 2006

Krrish vs Superman

For the first time in film history, we are seeing a cultural clash of epic proportions. 'Krrish' - the Indian superhero hit theatres today. Superman - the 'imported' superhero hits screens next week.

And the battle is not just at the box office. It's a merchandise war, as well. Krrish dolls, masks, school bags and whatnot have been rolled out, along with the film. Just saw them yesterday at the local mall.

Also on shelves - though in a different shop - were Super man action figures and allied merchandise.

Both are 'made in China' - the Superman stuff is a little classier but Krrish merchandise more affordable. You can buy 'official' Krrish toys for as low as Rs 99. Now if Krrish is a hit - which I think it will be - you can be sure, the stuff will sell. It will sell a lot. I can already picture pester power at work in my home!

Mummy, mujhe chahiye!
Indian movie makers have tried merchandising but never with so much conviction. We saw Kareena's wardrobe from Main Prem ki Deewani hoon retailing at Pantaloons (which flopped as badly as the film!). We saw the Hum Tum characters on bags and pencil boxes but that was grey market ka maal.

Now, Yashraj is making a tentative foray into merchandising with items like a 'trendy ceramic mug' sporting autographed pics of Aamir and Kajol. And a Fanaa 'mirchi' pendant. But sorry, I don't see things like that selling like hotcakes.

The most successful merchandising is a child-centric and unfortunately the average Bollywood film is not. Krrish may get panned by critics or laughed at by teens (if the s/fx don't live upto expectation!). But kids will watch it. And they will think Hrithik is cool because they have no historical superman-spiderman baggage.

Kids are a unique franchise Hrithik has created with his squeaky clean image, dancing abilities and of course 'Koi Mil Gaya'. A film which was more than inspired by Steven Spielberg's E.T. but won your heart anyways. Will Krrish live up to that legacy?

Well, I have yet to see the film but its makers get a 9 out of 10 from me for a very well orchestrated marketing effort.

I mean they've even got the Singapore Tourism Board promoting their city to fans who wish to see 'shooting kahan hui'. That's what I call globalisation!

The icing on the cake would be a sequel to Krrish, where Superman makes a guest appearance :)

pics: from my camera phone, at Center One mall, Vashi

Update:
Just noticed Business Standard has covered the Krrish merchandising effort. You can read their take on it here

28 comments:

  1. I am sure this will be a great comedy movie after a long time. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. An interesting international review:
    http://www.twitchfilm.net/archives/006622.html#more\

    ReplyDelete
  3. I saw the movie and yes, there was laughing at the SFX by the yuppie crowd. The effects weren't THAT bad save for one sequence that looked like an animated Ramayana shot.

    I enjoyed the movie (at 21) and find it endearing that the Hindi film industry is ready to take risks and make a superhero movie. Who knows, if Krrish does well, we migh hyave a better sequel to Krrish.

    Having said that, I'm really looking forward to next Friday. Superman Returns is going to rock!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Krish is a wonderful, a must watc 4 everyone.. and thnk u so much 4 the BS link...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Krrish is a great movie, any brand associated with it is going to reap benefits.

    Blog at- http://theignorant.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. Rashmi,

    The merchandising, an import from the west, is going to stay. It was just a matter of time when this would have started.

    Balaji

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi guys,

    Saw the movie just today.You can find the review of the movie at :---

    http://krrishreview.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  8. Krrish merchandise is a very smart move by the makers of the movie. Not only is the movie going to rake in considerable sums of money, thanks to the enormous hype surrounding it, but the merchandising will ensure that it stays in people's minds long after. One can expect sequels to follow up in case Krrish hits off big.

    Anyway, before Krrish got the time to release on Friday, I released my own version of it - a nice little spoof. I'd like you to check it out on my blog. Coz methinks India needs spoofs just as much as superhero movies.

    Shameless self-advertising I know, but I think you might like it nonetheless.

    my-punching-bag.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. hi rashmi... pls do support "Bloggers for Tibet day" on July 6th, which is also "World Tibet Day". You can read more about this here ... http://www.voiceofambition.com/Tibet/index.php?/archives/10-Bloggers-for-Tibet-Day.html

    Thanks
    Aqua

    ReplyDelete
  10. hey i watched krrish over the weekend.......decent attempt.

    I love the way bollywood is being coporatised...
    also for people who have seen the movie did u notice the clever in film advertisement.....tide, bournvita....and so much more....

    ReplyDelete
  11. The success of the movie Krishh is quite debatable..we will have to wait and watch...merchandise has never quite worked in India, so its going to be a huge challenge

    ReplyDelete
  12. very interesting post.
    Krrish vs Superman
    it would be fun watching both of these bac 2 bac

    ReplyDelete
  13. I think the Indian Movie Merchandising has matured and has taken quite a long time to do that too.I guess the merchandising idea started with "Maine Pyar Kiya" way back in the 90's..and was virtually non existent for the whole decade..after it again popped up.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Actually 'Hanuman' is the most popular merchandising done in the recent past.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Just out of curiosity, don't u think India's first superhero flick is Mr India.

    ReplyDelete
  16. krrish-george of indian jungle!

    ReplyDelete
  17. nice work man keep it up...
    its really worth spending a moment here ..

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  18. I watched both of them and really loves Krish....but many if my friends at aquabot here in New Jersey loves the Superman....Not much surprising as we all are stuck to our tradition and tastes..Anycase both movies are good.

    ReplyDelete
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