In just a day or two, new guidelines would be out around the maximum allowed occupancy in theatres. While it currently stands at 50%, one waits to see if it is at 75% or perhaps even bigger than that. So far, there is only one upcoming biggie which has made its plans clear – Radhe – Your Most Wanted Bhai. Salman Khan has already announced that he will keep his Eid promise. There are two more biggies which are ready – Akshay Kumar’s Sooryavanshi and Ranveer Singh’s ’83. On the other hand John Abraham’s Mumbai Saga is arriving on Amazon Prime.
It is understandable if the ones bankrolling Sooryavanshi and ’83 still want to adopt a wait and watch approach. After all these are biggies designed to be at least 200 Crore Club entrants. Agreed that Master has managed to come close to that number after being released theatrically. However, the Vijay starrer has a localized appeal and it is relatively easier to mobilize crowds in one territory with immense fan base. However, for a pan-India release, multiple factors need to be taken into account, and hence strategy needs to be made territory by territory.
In such a scenario, one wonders whether the next in line can possibly take a plunge, now that the stage is wide open for them to arrive. These are not smaller films by any stretch of imagination; after all, these are spearheaded by a credible star or two and there is a big banner backing them up as well. However, these are not the kind that need 125 crores, 150 crores or 200 crores to break even. These can well live with a total that is in the vicinity of 100 crores, a few could even do with a little lesser. That said, if they end up doing more, then it’s only ‘sone pe suhaga’!
I am talking about Jayeshbhai Jordaar, Bunty aur Babli 2, Shershaah, Bhoot Police and Phone Bhoot, to name a few.
Each of these films is either completely ready or just needs some more days to be polished and be ready after post production. These are exciting films as well and promise good entertainment. These have the kind of star appeal that can attract audiences to theatres. These promise all around family entertainment. These are the ones that cater to the masses as well as classes. These can penetrate well into the multiplexes as well as single screens (well, most of them can).
After all, Ranveer Singh can be expected to be betting big on ’83 considering the sports drama relives India’s big victory in the World Cup cricket. However, Jayeshbhai Jordaar is just the kind of light hearted fun film which could well be in the space of Band Baaja Baaraat. Rest assured, for audiences deprived of some big screen entertainment that they can relish in a family outing, this one with Shalini Pandey (of Arjun Reddy fame) could well be just the right offering.
As for Saif Ali Khan, he has comedies like Bunty aur Babli 2 and Bhoot Police ready for the audiences. Former is the true blue sequel of Bunty aur Babli, a superhit, and with Rani Mukherji continuing to be the common element, the film promises a lot of fun. In fact the Yash Raj offering is one film which was said to be gearing up first for a Christmas release and then for a Valentine’s Day arrival. However, with no official word on the film, one now hopes that it makes it to the big screen in a few weeks from now. Could the Holi weekend be just right for it?
As for Bhoot Police, it is just the kind of horror-comedy that could get audiences entertained all over again just like Stree did. Considering its small town appeal due to its Dharmshala setting, and an exciting cast that comprises of Jacqueline Fernandez and Yami Gautam as well along with Arjun Kapoor, producer Ramesh Taurani could well plan ahead for it.
Meanwhile talking about Bhoot, there is Katrina Kaif’s Phone Bhoot as well which is ready. The film has Ishaan Khatter and Siddhant Chaturvedi pair up with the gorgeous actors and as per the buzz in the air, this one is about ghost-busters. At least at the multiplexes, this one could well ignite some sort of fire. Moreover, it has been a while since Katrina was seen on the big screen. Producers Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani could well bring an end to this wait.
Same holds true for Sidharth Malhotra as well who must be itching to strike again after the success of Marjaavaan. In an out and out massy avtar he had done well and now that Shershaah is ready, he is ready to tell the story of real life Kargil hero Vikram Batra at the big screen. This is the kind of film which can do well across the country and with Karan Johar backing it up, one can expect good cinematic feel to it. The film is ready as well and could well be one of the first ones to strike big.
The best part about an early announcement of these films would be the sheer availability of release dates and screens. Time and again one finds Bollywood filmmakers struggling to arrive solo or find the kind of widespread release that they usually aim for. In the present circumstances, there is no such challenge since the big guns are yet to make an announcement and it is quite some time away before two or more films begin to arrive on the same Friday.
It would be prudent to strike now, and strike hard.