Controversy may have erupted all around it and Udta Punjab makers may well be relieved to see their film actually getting released, but what is most on everybody's mind is why the row with the Censor Board that sparked outrage across the country, did not actually turn the movie into a Rs 100 cr monster, at the least.
Controversy may have erupted all around it and Udta Punjab makers may well be relieved to see their film actually getting released, but what is most on everybody’s mind is why the row with the Censor Board that sparked outrage across the country, did not actually turn the movie into a Rs 100 cr monster, at the least.
While the restricted release, of just 2,000+ theatres, may have much to do with it, but considering the volatile nature of the content, the subject itself (drug induced stupor of the youth), which was very contemporary, the fact that such a subject had not been broached till now as well as a youngish cast that gave standout performances, there was surely enough firepower to attract the masses. The film stars Shahid Kapoor, Alia Bhat, Kareena Kapoor and Diljit Dosanjh.
But that did not happen and Udta Punjab turned into a movie that performed well, but not extraordinarily so. Going with that trend Udta Punjab box office collections have reached near the Rs 50 cr mark. By the 7th day, the collections stand at Rs 48.50 cr (India business). Here is the break-up through the week’s journey: Fri Rs 10.05 cr, Sat Rs 11.25 cr, Sun Rs 12.50 cr, Mon Rs 4.50 cr, Tue Rs 4 cr, Wed Rs 3.40 cr, Thu Rs 2.80 cr. According to Bollywood Hungama, the gross collections of Udta Punjab are as high as Rs 75.82 cr.
Hindi movie critic and business analyst Taran Adarsh said this on Twitter, “#UdtaPunjab performed best in Punjab and Delhi specifically in Week 1. In other circuits, the biz ranged from decent to ordinary….”
While Udta Punjab had the good fortune of not having any competition in theatres to deal with, at the end of week one, there is some, even if it is lightweight in the form of Sardaarji 2. Taran Adarsh tweeted, “Week 2, starting today, is crucial for #UdtaPunjab. It faces tough competition from the Punjabi film #SardaarJi2 in North circuits….”
That Udta Punjab has a reason to worry about Sardaarji is clear from this Taran Adarsh tweet, “Much-awaited Punjabi film #SardaarJi2 starts with a bang… Opens to packed houses… Screen count: India 350 screens, Overseas 200 screens.”
All things said and done, Udta Punjab did get a negative vote of sorts that crucially affected its earnings and that is word-of-mouth boost. Movies that tend to do well over the entire stretch of the week and beyond usually get good reviews from those who have seen it and recommend the same to others. So, even though controversy generally sells, a number of things have to go together to make for one big standout success.