While Aamir Khan’s ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ and ‘Raksha Bandhan’, which released last week, sank without a trace, a small Telugu movie – ‘Karthikeya 2’ – is making waves in Hindi circuits. Nikhil Siddhartha, the main lead of the movie, is fairly popular in Telugu-speaking regions but is not a known name for the Hindi audience. Hence, expectedly, the movie’s Hindi dubbed version netted merely Rs 7 lakh on Day 1.

But while the collections of other two big films started plummeting, ‘Karthikeya 2’ began to gain momentum sans any publicity or brouhaha. On its second Friday, ‘Karthikeya 2’ (Hindi dubbed) clocked up Rs 2.46 crore net which are better than the combined collections of ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ and ‘Raksha Bandhan’. Till now, this Nikhil Siddhartha has garnered Rs 8.21 crore net and is expected to soar further.

‘Karthikeya 2’ is a mystery movie which has roots in Indian mythology. It is yet another example of a film rooted in Indian culture or history storming the box-office. Earlier this year, SS Rajamouli’s ‘RRR’ and Vivek Agnihotri’s ‘The Kashmir Files’ turned out to be monumental money-spinners. While ‘RRR’ celebrated Indian cultural heritage, ‘The Kashmir Files’ depicted a brutal chapter in India’s history. A few years ago, ‘Baahubali’ series had slayed the box-office by becoming the biggest blockbuster in the annals of Indian cinema.

Now the success of ‘Karthikeya 2’ has made many experts sit up and introspect. Are Indian audiences more interested in movies which either celebrate the glorious Indian culture or are rooted in history? The abject debacle of a string of regular potboilers has fortified this perception. The New Indian talked to a few trade experts about the subject. Here’s what they have to say:

Komal Nahta (Veteran trade analyst): I don’t completely subscribe to this notion. While it is true that ‘RRR’, ‘The Kashmir Files’ and ‘Karthikeya 2’ are rooted in either Indian history or mythology, this isn’t the only reason why they are successful. What would you say about ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2’ which was an out-and-out potboiler but became a blockbuster?

I’ve been in the trade for many years. People talk about ‘trends’ and ‘flavour of the season’ but I’ve seen that movies of all genres work wonders at the ticket-counters in all decades. It all boils down to the content. A movie of any genre can be a hit if it engages people.

Though I must add here our audience have certainly become ‘content-conscious’. They want splendiferous content, not run-of-the-mill movies. This has happened because they are now exposed to world-class content which is available on OTT platforms. People have become fastidious and demanding. Our makers and stars must realize this pronto rather than just licking their wounds.

Raj Bansal (Prominent exhibitor and distributor): Our family has been in this business for more than five decades. My father always told me that only those movies which are rooted in Indian soil find favours with the audience. His advice has stood me in good stead. See, the audience have become wiser and want better content but they haven’t restricted themselves to a particular genre. They want to watch all kinds of films if they’re entertaining.

So many people, including my representatives, have told me to watch ‘Karthikeya 2’. Everyone who has seen it is raving about it and that’s why it is doing well. Nothing works like people’s word-of-mouth. On the other hand, those who have watched ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ are dissuading others from going to cinema halls. No ersatz social-media trends and publicity can alter the fate of a movie. The paying public is pretty perceptive.

My request to filmmakers is to mount entertaining movies, be it of any genre, rather than making projects. I am sanguine that Bollywood will sally back with a thunder.

While Aamir Khan’s ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ and ‘Raksha Bandhan’, which released last week, sank without a trace, a small Telugu movie – ‘Karthikeya 2’ – is making waves in Hindi circuits. Nikhil Siddhartha, the main lead of the movie, is fairly popular in Telugu-speaking regions but is not a known name for the Hindi audience. Hence, expectedly, the movie’s Hindi dubbed version netted merely Rs 7 lakh on Day 1.
But while the collections of other two big films started plummeting, ‘Karthikeya 2’ began to gain momentum sans any publicity or brouhaha. On its second Friday, ‘Karthikeya 2’ (Hindi dubbed) clocked up Rs 2.46 crore net which are better than the combined collections of ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ and ‘Raksha Bandhan’. Till now, this Nikhil Siddhartha has garnered Rs 8.21 crore net and is expected to soar further.
‘Karthikeya 2’ is a mystery movie which has roots in Indian mythology. It is yet another example of a film rooted in Indian culture or history storming the box-office. Earlier this year, SS Rajamouli’s ‘RRR’ and Vivek Agnihotri’s ‘The Kashmir Files’ turned out to be monumental money-spinners. While ‘RRR’ celebrated Indian cultural heritage, ‘The Kashmir Files’ depicted a brutal chapter in India’s history. A few years ago, ‘Baahubali’ series had slayed the box-office by becoming the biggest blockbuster in the annals of Indian cinema.
Now the success of ‘Karthikeya 2’ has made many experts sit up and introspect. Are Indian audiences more interested in movies which either celebrate the glorious Indian culture or are rooted in history? The abject debacle of a string of regular potboilers has fortified this perception. The New Indian talked to a few trade experts about the subject. Here’s what they have to say:
Komal Nahta (Veteran trade analyst): I don’t completely subscribe to this notion. While it is true that ‘RRR’, ‘The Kashmir Files’ and ‘Karthikeya 2’ are rooted in either Indian history or mythology, this isn’t the only reason why they are successful. What would you say about ‘Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2’ which was an out-and-out potboiler but became a blockbuster?
I’ve been in the trade for many years. People talk about ‘trends’ and ‘flavour of the season’ but I’ve seen that movies of all genres work wonders at the ticket-counters in all decades. It all boils down to the content. A movie of any genre can be a hit if it engages people.
Though I must add here our audience have certainly become ‘content-conscious’. They want splendiferous content, not run-of-the-mill movies. This has happened because they are now exposed to world-class content which is available on OTT platforms. People have become fastidious and demanding. Our makers and stars must realize this pronto rather than just licking their wounds.
Raj Bansal (Prominent exhibitor and distributor): Our family has been in this business for more than five decades. My father always told me that only those movies which are rooted in Indian soil find favours with the audience. His advice has stood me in good stead. See, the audience have become wiser and want better content but they haven’t restricted themselves to a particular genre. They want to watch all kinds of films if they’re entertaining.
So many people, including my representatives, have told me to watch ‘Karthikeya 2’. Everyone who has seen it is raving about it and that’s why it is doing well. Nothing works like people’s word-of-mouth. On the other hand, those who have watched ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ are dissuading others from going to cinema halls. No ersatz social-media trends and publicity can alter the fate of a movie. The paying public is pretty perceptive.
My request to filmmakers is to mount entertaining movies, be it of any genre, rather than making projects. I am sanguine that Bollywood will sally back with a thunder.

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