The theatrical trailer of Shah Rukh Khan’s much anticipated film film, Zero was launched with a lot of fanfare on 2nd November 2018. Also starring Anushka Sharma and Katrina Kaif in lead, the trailer of the film was uploaded on the Red Chillies Official YouTube Channel, and the same went viral all across the social media platform in no time. It garnered nearly 41 Million Views, and 1 Million Likes in a span of 24 hours, thereby creating a new record. To put things to perspective, the total views generated by the trailer of Zero in 24 hours is more than the combined views generated by Hindi, Tamil and Telugu trailer of Baahubali 2 in the same time span. Talking about the dislikes, the trailer got approximately 83K dislikes on YouTube. On the social space, the response to the trailer is on the positive side and arguably the best among the Khan films that have released this year.
Talking about the trade, we interacted with 12 exhibitors/distributors to gauge their reaction to the trailer and the response was more or less positive by all of them. A leading trade expert told us that the trailer is good although it appeals majorly to the audience in the metros. He added further saying that the masses would make up their mind about the film taking into consideration the earthiness in the music as well as the word of mouth.
The audience reaction on ground, is also quite positive as they were able to relate to the journey of a middle-class Indian man. It would be wrong to say that this is the best received trailer of a Shah Rukh Khan film this decade. The trailer has all the ingredients to get the audiences at A centres i.e. Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, West Bengal, Mysore, Tamil Nadu and Kerala, on board. Basically, business model of Zero will be very similar to Dangal, which though appealed majorly towards the metros prior to its release, got the masses on board in the long run owing to the positive word of mouth and universally appealing content. On a personal level, the theatrical trailer of Zero delivered exactly what I expected by giving a glimpse of comedy, romance and drama. The trailer also introduced us to the complex conflicts of the films, which have been presented in an absolutely mainstream format by director, Aanand L Rai. The music by Ajay Atul is commanding a positive report in the industry and is expected to elevate the buzz of the film further as it nears the release.
While a good opening is definitely on cards all across, the collections will touch the roof i.e. reach the bumper level on Saturday and Sunday wherein the jump should come owing to the audience word of mouth. The families usually start visiting the theatres on Saturday and Sunday during the Christmas weekend and the same should happen with Zero as well. Last years’ Christmas release, Tiger Zinda Hai opened to Rs 34 crore at the Box-Office, and taking that as the benchmark, Zero, should be targeting an opening around the Rs 30 – 32 crore mark as this genre isn’t as front-loaded as action, which results in a bumper opening at mass belts. Films like Zero usually get the audience on board on Saturday and Sunday, though Shah Rukh Khan’s star-power will ensure an excellent opening around the Rs 30 crore mark for the film. If the audience reports are positive, biz should escalate over the weekend and help it breach past the Rs 105 crore mark in merely 3 days. Back in 2016, Aamir Khan’s Dangal also opened in the Rs 27 to 30 crore range, and the biz kept on increasing over the weekend with the positive reports. While this is just an early range of opening, we would come up with detailed analysis and prediction for the opening of the film closer to its’ release based on how the campaign unfolds. This article is merely meant to suggest the response to the trailer and initial expectation in terms of opening. Music will play a crucial role in elevating the buzz further from hereon. To sum it up, this has been a good start to the campaign of Zero and the film is just expected carry forward the buzz from hereon as it nears the release on 21st December 2018.