Telugu star Nani's latest movie Dasara is primed to score a big success at the box office.
Telugu superstar Nani is quite confident about his upcoming movie Dasara becoming a box-office success. And his confidence seems to stem from his knowledge of his core market, which is Telugu states and the timing of the release. The movie is coming out after a long dull period at the box office. The months of February and March were uneventful at the box office owing to many reasons. With all exams coming to an end and summer holidays within sight, the film might just emerge as the biggest earner in Nani's career. Dasara is due in cinemas this Thursday.
"There is good anticipation for the film (Dasara). After Waltair Veerayya there were no mass commercial entertainers that could appeal to audiences in cities and remote villages. We had a few releases, but mostly they worked in urban areas. After Sankranti, no films did well in small centres," remarked Deepak, who manages AndhraBoxOffice.com.
Dasara could fill the void thanks to its rustic appeal. Written and directed by debutant Srikanth Odhela, the movie was shot on a massive budget. Nani has ditched his boy-next-door charms to adopt the mannerism of a hardboiled working class rebel. The movie seems to have a lot to offer in terms of action and judging from the trailer, it also looks like a visual treat. Nani has been very committed to his character in this movie. So much so that he actually drank original alcohol to make his performance look more authentic.
Dasara is the biggest release in the Telugu states and for the next weeks. It has no major challenges on the horizon. "There are no other big movies. Not as big as Dasara. There are medium-budget films like Ravanasura. Even though Shaakuntalam is a big-budget movie, the anticipation is not that high at the moment. Probably, this is the biggest among highly anticipated Telugu movies this summer," Deepak added.
Dasara marks Nani's first pan-India release as it's simultaneously releasing in Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada and Hindi. And Nani also did a swell job promoting it across the country. While the movie looks poised to take the biggest-ever opening in Nani's career, it may not be the case n other parts of the country. "The film could rake in about Rs 15-20 crore in Telugu states alone. And that kind of opening is the biggest not just for Nani, but for all the stars of his generation," observed Deepak.
Nani's typical gross opening is below Rs 10 crore with net earnings of Rs 6-7 crore in the Telugu states.
Dasara, however, has some serious competition in other parts of the country. In the Hindi-speaking belt, Bollywood star Ajay Devgan's Bholaa , the remake of Tamil hit Kaithi, is releasing on Thursday. "The buzz is quite phenomenal in the south but in Hindi, it's below par. At a national level, I'm hoping for a Rs 25 crore start from all languages," said producer and film trade expert Girish Johar.
If Dasara manages to secure an opening to the tune of Rs 1 crore in the Hindi-speaking belt, the movie might just have a chance to grow during the long holiday weekend. The success of Bholaa also depends on good word of mouth.
"I'm hoping about Rs 10 to Rs 12 crore start, which is a decent start for an Ajay Devgan film. It has a four-day holiday weekend, it can build up on that. But, the box office is very dynamic. If the film is not being appreciated then it can come down," Johar added.
Dasara also has huge competition in Tamil Nadu. Pathu Thala and Viduthalai Part 1 are also releasing this weekend. Pathu Thala stars Simbu, while Viduthalai Part 1 stars Vijay Sethupathi and Soori in the lead roles. "The buzz around Dasara is not there here because of the availability of screen space. Pathu Thala and Viduthalai are the big titles for Tamil Nadu. Even my complex, which has two screens, is showing these two movies. All single screens and double screens have been blocked for these two movies across Tamil Nadu," said Rakesh Gowthaman, who runs Chennai's popular twin-screen Vettri Theatres.
Dasara may release about 100 screens in Tamil Nadu and mostly it will be limited to multiplex screens. But, that's unlikely to dampen the spirit of Nani and the makers of Dasara. "The filmmakers are releasing it in other languages but, they are not dependent on their successes. They are already looking happy. Of course, if it works in other languages it's a bonus," said Deepak.
Besides Nani, Dasara also stars Dheekshith Shetty, Keerthy Suresh, Samuthirakani, Shine Tom Chacko and Sai Kumar.