It has been more than a week since Eidul Azha but the festivities at Pakistani cinemas still seem to be in full swing. With Jawani Phir Nahi Ani (JPNA) having taken the lion’s share at the local box office during the holiday weekend, international movies have now started to join the fun.
As JPNA’s box office collections cross Rs150 million, the movie is well on its way to becoming the highest-grossing Pakistani film of all time. The multi-starrer film has already claimed the box office throne for 2015 after surpassing Wrong No’s record.
The movie has continued to perform impressively even during the weekdays, with Capri Cinema director Farrukh Rauf sharing how cinema-owners have been forced to extend its run due to the overwhelming audience response. “We’ve recorded an audience turnout between 40 to 50 per cent on the weekdays following Eid. This is a lot, given that our seating capacity is 800,” he said. According to him, the movie has generated around Rs4- to Rs5 million from Capri Cinema. “It could’ve been higher had our shows not been affected by a jalsa that took place on Saturday.”
CEO of ARY Films, Jerjees Seja, had earlier shared how it had been forecasted the film would continue to perform the same way for at least three weeks till Muharram, but is now hopeful that it could go on to dominate the screen till November. This may be likely as no Pakistani film is expected to release during this period.
International movies to be screened this weekend have also generated ‘strong’ returns from the Pakistani box office, with one instance being the Akshay Kumar- and Amy Jackson-starrer Singh is Bliing. The action-comedy, which is being distributed by IMGC Entertainment in the country, has managed to earn an estimated Rs22 million during its opening weekend. Having been released on around 45 screens, the movie has raked in more business than what had been expected considering JPNA’s popularity, said a representative of IMGC Entertainment. “We expect it to make around Rs60- to Rs70 million at the box office.”
Everest is another film that has picked up after Eid. With the movie having been overshadowed by JPNA during Eid, the last week has brought a change in its fortune. Although the box office returns are not promising in comparison with the local comedy film, distributors still deem them to be respectable.
According to a representative of its distributor Footprint Pvt Ltd, the survival-thriller has managed to earn an estimate of Rs15 million during its 11-day run so far. “Given how outstandingly JPNA has performed in local cinemas since its release, these are reasonable returns. Even now, the movie has a limited number of shows,” said Mirza Saad Baig, general manager of Footprint Pvt Ltd. He added that even prior to the release of the film, they had set themselves an approximate box office target of Rs20 million and expects the film to complete its run with a tally of Rs18 million at least.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 7th, 2015.