Box Office: 2023 starts on 'Kuttey's dull note, Marathi film 'Ved's high note, and Tamil films 'Thunivu'… – Moneycontrol

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It has been a dull start for Bollywood at the box office in 2023, what with filmmaker-music composer Vishal Bhardwaj’s son Aasman Bhardwaj’s directorial debut Kuttey taking a low opening. The signs were already visible in the preceding fortnight with no buzz or hype created around it, despite commercial actors such as Arjun Kapoor and Tabu steering the niche film. The producers did manage a good release size but the first-day numbers turned out to be rather low at just 1.07 crore. With the OTTs around, the appetite to consume such content in theatres seems to be getting thinner and thinner with every passing month.
Meanwhile, Riteish Deshmukh and Genelia D’Souza have a lot to cheer about as their Ved has emerged as a blockbuster. With Rs 42.2 crore in its kitty so far, the Marathi film has gone past Deshmukh’s last big Marathi biggie Lai Bhaari (2014), which had collected Rs 37 crore in its lifetime run. The trending Ved now stands to be the second-highest grosser, set to go past Rs 65 crore, after the biggest Marathi blockbuster till date, Sairat (2016), which had netted Rs 75 crore in its lifetime run.
But, considering both Deshmukh and D’Souza are Pan-India names and faces, Ved hasn’t seen a wider release (Marathi with English subtitles or dubbed into Hindi) release in rest of the country, whereas new Tamil releases Thunivu and Varisu are already doing that (Tamil with English subtitles).
As for Ajith Kumar and Vijay, in the action thriller Thunivu and family drama Varisu, respectively, both have seen a good release outside of Tamil Nadu as well, including in north India. Varisu has seen a Hindi-dubbed release as well, though Thunivu didn’t opt for that option.
Nonetheless, both the films, which saw a mid-week release on Wednesday, have been collecting well at the box office. Of course, the numbers are getting split owing to the competition between the two superstars. However, from the occupancy perspective, they both are doing well so far, with Thunivu having a slight edge over Varisu.
Unlike Hindi films, movies from the south don’t follow a day-on-day official collections model since there is a far bigger penetration at the single-screen theatres where paper tickets are still in vogue. As a result, compilation is not straightforward. Still, according to industry estimates, Thunivu has netted Rs 31 crore in Tamil Nadu whereas Varisu is not too far behind at Rs 28 crore. To think of it, between the two films, approximately Rs 60 crore have been collected in just three days before the weekend, which shows yet again that south market is really big.
*Estimates. Final numbers awaited
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