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Advance booking of Upendra’s Kabzaa yet to pick up; audiences waiting for positive word of mouth?

Two days since online ticketing was opened in several single-screen theatres, the response is still sluggish

Advance booking of Upendra’s Kabzaa yet to pick up; audiences waiting for positive word of mouth?
Upendra in a still from Kabzaa

Last Updated: 03.06 PM, Mar 14, 2023


Kannada filmmaker R Chandru has been going to town calling his film, Kabzaa, the next big thing from Kannada cinema. The film is releasing in theatres across the globe on March 17 and advance booking for the same has opened in many centres. In Bengaluru, for instance, several single-screen theatres have opened bookings for Kabzaa, but two days later, the response to it is far from positive. A quick look at online ticket aggregator BookMyShow for Kabzaa has a predominantly ‘green’ page, with bookings remaining sluggish.


Despite the negative press around Kabzaa about it being too similar to KGF, it was expected to create some buzz in industry circles, given that Chandru has been assuring audiences that he’s presenting a different story. But it seems that the filmmaker’s failure in promoting the film well has resulted in the lacklustre response to it.

From the time Chandru announced the release date, the biggest complaint of netizens was that there was no buzz surrounding the film, what with the teaser and songs not inspiring much confidence. It picked up a tad after the trailer came out, but the team has been unable to sustain the momentum. Upendra and Shriya Saran, who have been attending most of the pre-release events, have been offering limited insight into the film and saying the same things everywhere, with the former’s claim that the real stars of Kabzaa are the DOP, art director and composer, while she has only been saying that she’s grateful to be a part of it.

“No offense to anyone, but considering the hype and star-studded cast of #Kabzaa, along with its Pan-Indian appeal, tickets in Mysore should have been selling like hotcakes. However, that doesn't seem to be the case at the moment,” wrote one user, to which another chimed in, “Upendra lost is market and people don't show any interest on upendra films according to recent films.” A third added that even Chandru’s earlier track record does not inspire much confidence in the film.

Industry trackers have been pointing out that of the 90-odd shows opened for booking in Bengaluru, only 10 are fast filling. It is expected that this will pick up by late Wednesday or Thursday, but there is a section of audiences who are waiting for the FDFS reports and, hopefully, positive word of mouth to decide whether to watch the film or not.

There are isolated mentions of high-ticket prices also, but so far, Kabzaa rates in Bengaluru single-screens have been consistently between the Rs 150-Rs 250 mark depending the class of ticket.

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