Even when the third wave was just showing signs of during down, it was Bachchhan Paandey that was the first biggie to be announced for release. There was a whole lot of uncertainty around how the situation would be at theatres when the film would eventually arrive but then as a producer, Sajid Nadiadwala took the call to be the early riser, which gave a huge boost to Bollywood as a whole. A number of other announcements started coming in as the air of positivity spread far, especially since Akshay Kumar was leading the show. As someone who had opened theatres after the first wave (Bell Bottom) and the second wave (Sooryavanshi), this was yet another brave move in the right direction.
However, no one associated with the film would have bargained for the fact that there would be The Kashmir Files that will come out of nowhere and spoil the party completely for them. The all-time blockbuster is a huge wave and is all set for the highest glory. While the geopolitical drama has caught the fancy of the nation, the film had to bear the brunt, as evidenced in the collections over the weekend that stands at 37.25 crores*. The film couldn’t quite grow further from Saturday collections of 12 crores as Sunday was similar too at 12 crores*.
Though one can’t quite underline where the masala action comedy-drama would have headed for if not for this competition, even at a conservative level one can state that 60 crores would have been there for the taking in the first weekend. Bachchhan Paandey may not have met with a fantabulous response from all over but then it hasn’t been a pushover either. That would have allowed it to sail through at least.
*Estimates. Final numbers awaited.
Note: All collections as per production and distribution sources.