Amidst raging protests in several States, Padmaavat , the film that saw delays due to various controversies, finally hit the screens on Thursday. But little is known of the opening day collections of the controversial movie, though in the paid previews in select theatres held on Wednesday the film supposedly made ₹4-5 crore.
Viacom18 Motion Pictures said the film was screened across more than 4,000 screens on the opening day. Trade analysts estimated that the film was not shown across 20-30 per cent of the theatres in the country due to security reasons.
On Wednesday, the Multiplex Association of India had said that its members would not screen the movie in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Goa due to safety concerns after open threats and protests by groups of the Raput community, including the Rajput Karni Sena, among others. Screening was also impacted in some other centres. A Viacom18 spokesperson said, “We are humbled with the response we have received for Padmaavat . Over 1 million Indians have already watched the film and occupancy levels for shows are very strong across more than 4,000 screens — with most of them running house-full. The feedback for the film has been overwhelming.” Trade analyst Komal Nahta said, “The film screening was impacted in Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and parts of Bihar and Haryana but we hope this will ease out in a day or two when protestors realise there is nothing objectionable in the movie.” He said the movie has the potential to set new records in terms of box office collections.
A senior executive at a multiplex chain, who did not wish to be identified, said, “Barring 100-110 screens, we are screening the movie across all other theatres. We are working closely with the security agencies to ensure safety of the patrons. The movie has seen a brilliant response. We hope things will improve and the movie will see even bigger traction from Saturday onwards.”
The period drama, which has been directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, is a co-production of Viacom18 Motion Pictures and Bhansali Productions.