‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ opening a Shock for Bollywood?

Laal Singh Chaddha, as well as Raksha Bandhan, was thought by many to help revive Bollywood.

With Aamir Khan and Akshay Kumar headlining the two films, many expected the films would break the rut of Bollywood non-performers.

However, the first signs do not appear to be promising.

The bookings for both films stayed quite low and the opening day occupancy is lagging at 12-20%, depending on the location.

This has led many industry experts to predict gloomy times for the two mega films.

On August 10, 2022, film trade analyst Taran Adarsh tweeted: “Stop painting a rosy picture…

“Let’s get the facts right… The bookings of Laal Singh Chaddha and Raksha Bandhan are way below expectations…

“Both dependent on [i] spot bookings/ walk-in audience and [ii] word of mouth to put up strong totals on Day 1.”

This was backed up by multiple reports from BoxOfficeIndia.com, which claimed the bookings for both were low.

Now, sources say that the opening day first shows have seen remarkably low attendance for both films.

An exhibitor told Hindustan Times: “The occupancy for Laal Singh Chaddha is around 15-20 per cent in multiplexes and for Raksha Bandhan, it is even lower, as low as 12 per cent in some halls for the first shows. This is very disappointing.”

BoxOfficeIndia.com also reported the same figures.

Trade analysts say the figures should improve over the weekend but 60-70% occupancy looks unlikely, which means the films will struggle to post huge opening weekend numbers.

Film trade analyst Atul Mohan says that such numbers were expected since Raksha Bandhan is a festival, where people do not go out much:

“This is a festival where people stay with family and not go out for movies.

“The numbers are likely to stay low till evening. My concern is that given it’s a long weekend, people tend to travel, which may further hurt the business.

“The films won’t have big opening days but how they perform depend on how they improve over the next 2-3 days.”

The one thing working for the two films is positive critical reception, which both have received.

This can lead to good word-of-mouth. Films have seen growth through word-of-mouth, however bigger films like Laal Singh Chaddha work on strong opening days.

Laal Singh Chaddha is the official Hindi remake of Tom Hanks’ Forrest Gump and stars Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, Naga Chaitanya, and Mona Singh.

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