Yet again, prediction came true to the T as Phata Poster Nikhla Hero opened to 50% footfalls. Though some in the trade and industry were of view that the film would have a humongous start and there were numbers like 8-9-10 crores thrown in for the opening day, this was always going to be a monumental task due to reasons as stated in last week’s column. The film’s buzz was fine but not the kind that would have resulted in Housefull boards all over. Songs, which were expected to pull in crowds, actually contributed to break in the narrative. Moreover, there was always going to be competition from Grand Masti.

Shahid Kapoor in a still from Phata Poster Nikhla Hero and Irrfan Khan in a still from The Lunchbox
Shahid Kapoor in a still from Phata Poster Nikhla Hero and Irrfan Khan in a still from The Lunchbox

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As a result, the film stayed average right through the weekend, hence resulting in around 22 crore coming in from the first three days. While this is better than Shahid Kapoor’s Teri Meri Kahaani (16 crore), it is in the same range as his Mausam (21 crore). With mixed reviews and audience word of mouth coming the film’s way, it would have to stay really stable throughout the week to register a decent total in order to enter the average zone.

The Lunchbox, with all its hype and hoopla, was never expected to create a riot at the box office, as was indicated in last week’s column. A niche film, it was pitched as an affair that would make audience come in hordes. Well, at premium multiplexes, the Irrfan Khan starrer was indeed the first choice of cinegoers, as further demonstrated in constant rise in collections over the weekend. However, it was released at very few screens and the audience base for it was niche as well.

As a result, the opening weekend saw over 7 crore coming in. However it isn’t one of those films where a mere weekend decides its fate. The real situation would be known once the film enters its second week.

Joginder Tuteja tweets @tutejajoginder

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