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‘Newton’, ‘Judwaa 2’ surprise in September-end

LiveMint logoLiveMint 03-10-2017 Lata Jha

New Delhi: Saving the best for the last, September threw in its biggest surprise towards the final weekend with Varun Dhawan-starrer Judwaa 2, to culminate what has been a fiercely packed month at the movies.

“There were more than 30 films in September all languages put together,” said film trade and exhibition expert Girish Johar. “While Judwaa 2 will easily spill over into October, the other release to stand out was Newton, which picked up especially after the news of its Oscar submission.”

With earnings of Rs59.25 crore over the opening weekend, Judwaa 2 is easily the most successful Hindi film of the month. Considering their modest budgets, Newton at Rs16.15 crore and comedy drama Shubh Mangal Savdhaan at Rs42.46 crore were also winners.

Rajkummar Rao-starrer Newton, trade experts said, especially benefited from the news of it being selected as India’s official entry for the Oscars the same day as its India theatrical release, a factor that generated much curiosity and helped the film hold up till Judwaa 2 showed up a week later.

The same cannot be said for other Hindi releases of the month though. Slapstick comedy Poster Boys, political crime drama Daddy, Kangana Ranaut-starrer Simran, Farhan Akhtar’s Lucknow Central, Sanjay Dutt’s comeback vehicle Bhoomi and crime biopic Haseena Parkar only managed Rs12.73 crore, Rs8.10 crore, Rs16.98 crore, Rs11.17 crore, Rs10.28 crore and Rs8 crore, respectively.

However, it was an impressive month for Hollywood movies in the country, said Atul Mohan, editor of trade magazine Complete Cinema. Andy Muschietti’s supernatural horror film It, based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, built on the growing interest in the horror genre, minting Rs18.47 crore at last count. The other winner was action spy comedy Kingsman: The Golden Circle, which made Rs12.35 crore.

Building on a rapidly expanding repertoire was regional cinema that is consistently churning out hits both in the domestic and overseas territories. Jr. NTR’s Telugu action drama Jai Lava Kusa, for instance, made Rs70 crore in domestic box office collections over its opening weekend alone, besides earning Rs9.85 crore in the US at last count. Mahesh Babu’s bilingual spy thriller Spyder, which released last week, has also grossed Rs100 crore worldwide.

To be sure, there is a lot to look forward in the month of October. While Saif Ali Khan-starrer Chef and neo-noir science fiction Hollywood film Blade Runner 2049 open this week, there is more later.

“Diwali is always the time you expect most fireworks at the box office. And Secret Superstar and Golmaal Again are the kind of fun family films made for the festival,” Mohan said.

All figures have been sourced from movie website Bollywood Hungama

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