Theatres have been shuttered for 17 months in order to contain the spread of Covid-19. The last film to be released before the lockdown in March 2020 was Baaghi 3 starring Tiger Shroff, which grossed Rs 95 crore before everything came to a halt. The Angrezi Medium, starring Irrfan Khan released and didn’t even get an opportunity to recoup its costs because it barely had a weekend at the box office and collected 10 cr.
Dinesh Vijan once again went ahead and released his another film Roohi starring Janhvi Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao in the cinema halls once the lockdown was eased. The film managed to collect 25 cr at the BO.
However, after that, it was back to being a blank affair. Since April 2021, there hasn’t been a new release in cinema halls. That’s yet another quarter with no revenue, as was the case in 2020, and while the situation was depressingly terrible in 2020 as well due to a lack of releases, things should improve in the current quarter.
Akshay Kumar then brought a good news when he announced the release of his upcoming film Bell Bottom in theaters. This decision came out when the second wave had begun to fade. Unfortunately, the drop in cases has not been as rapid as it was after the initial wave, and Covid cases have remained at around 40,000 countrywide for nearly three weeks
The fact that the majority of the new cases are coming from Kerala and the North East suggests that it may be nearing an end. While people hope and pray that things would improve in these states, these areas account for less than 5% of total Bollywood revenue.
So now, according to Joginder Tuteja if a quarter in general is estimated to bring in Rs 1,000 crore for Bollywood, certain states will only bring in Rs50 crore. From a business standpoint, Maharashtra accounts for over 30% of the revenue generated by a typical Bollywood film. In fact, if a film has a more MH feel to it, such as Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior or Singham, it can contribute even more to the box office.
Delhi also contributes a significant portion of the business, and a Hindi film cannot be expected to succeed if the city is not involved. Around 20% of the budget comes from the capital. If the NCR is included, particularly Gurgaon and NOIDA, which have a large multiplex audience, the score can be increased by another ten percentage points. All of this implies that 50% of the business is dependent on Mumbai, Delhi and NCR.
Theatres in Delhi and the NCR have reopened, and the lockdown around theaters in the rest of the country has begun to ease. This implies that Bollywood may start putting together its release schedule all over again.
What needs to be seen is how quickly the pandemic situation in Maharashtra improves, because despite a 10% decrease in cases compared to last week, daily cases are still in the 6,000-7,000 range. The government is anticipated to loosen restrictions once the number reaches the 3,000-4,000 mark.