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Kabzaa: From KGF 1 to Kantara, box office records that the Upendra film can break

From lifetime collections to opening day numbers, Kabzaa has many records within its grasp but one can never be too sure, of late, with box office predictions.

Kabzaa: From KGF 1 to Kantara, box office records that the Upendra film can break
Kabzaa Box Office Predictions
  • Swaroop Kodur

Last Updated: 08.20 AM, Mar 15, 2023

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Kabzaa is all set to be unleashed on March 17th with a widespread global release as part of the package. The film will be released in more than 4000 screens in India alone and as a bona fide pan-India film, its theatrical release will also include Hindi, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam dubbed versions. R. Chandru's film also carries the expectations of breaking the ongoing box office lull in Kannada Cinema and for this reason alone, trade pundits and industry trackers have maintained a keen eye on the theatrical run of the film across the country.

Should Kabzaa hold up to the hype it has created, the film boats every chance of breaking a few box office records set by some of its predecessors in the Kannada Film Industry. The bar is set pretty high, mind you, with Hombale Films' KGF franchise and Kantara owning most of the big records to themselves - Kabzaa cannot be discounted yet because the stage seems perfectly set for the Upendra and Shriya Saran starrer.

So, as we countdown to the release of the film, let's take a quick look at some of the more 'attainable' box office benchmarks for Kabzaa. From lifetime collections to opening day numbers, the film has many records within its grasp but one can never be too sure of late with box office predictions. Here we go:

Highest Opening Day Business in Karnataka

Before we dig deeper, let's put it on record that it would take a mammoth effort for any film to reach the point that KGF 2 did at the box office. The Prashanth Neel, aside from grossing over Rs. 1200 crores worldwide, collected Rs. 26.5 crores in Karnataka alone on the day it released (April 14th, 2022). The next best first-day collections for a Kannada film in Karnataka are of the Kiccha Sudeep starrer Vikrant Rona which managed to yield Rs. 17.8 crores (as per

Puneeth Rajkumar's final commercial release James earned somewhere close to Rs. 16 crores we are told with KGF: Chapter 1 grossing Rs. 16.10 crores in Karnataka on the opening day of its release.

So, in this vein, Kabzaa holds a great chance of coming close to these numbers or even surpassing them, should the initial word-of-mouth be positive. It all comes to the advance bookings, as well, and Kabzaa is yet to hit the ground running in this regard.

Lifetime Box Office Collections

KGF 2 leads the box office table currently by a rather striking margin with Rishab Shetty's gigantic 'sleeper success' Kantara taking the position with Rs. 410 crores (~). The 2018 film KGF 1 ended its theatrical run with global collections of Rs. 238 crores and Rakshit Shetty's 777 Charlie folded with Rs. 102.75 crores to take the fourth position on this all-time chart.

Vikrant Rona stands a close fifth with Rs. 100.35 crores and James the sixth highest-grossing Kannada film to date with Rs. 94.2 crores. Interestingly, all the aforementioned films released in 2022.

Can Kabzaa enter this coveted list and etch a name for itself in eternity? For starters, the film looks quite good to cross the Rs. 100 crore mark and if it does so, it will enter the top 5 with great ease. The next major target is KGF: Chapter 1 and it will take a lot out of R. Chandru's film to get to this point. Kantara's numbers, too, seem mighty far off ahead of the release but who knows, Kabzaa may have it in it after all to do the unthinkable. But can it do the unimaginable and challenge KGF: Chapter 2? Boy, wouldn't that be fun to watch!

Kantara Kannada Box Office

Ahead of the release of Kantara, nobody saw the film going on to surpass the theatrical footfall numbers of KGF 2 or that it would beat the film's box office collections in Karnataka (Kantara grossed more than Rs. 183 crores in Karnataka alone). However, should the audience respond well to a big-ticket film and should the general word-of-mouth be encouraging, films have enunciated that they withhold a lot of box office potential.

Thereby, for Kabzaa, a lot depends on how the film fares in the first day or two of its release and whether the audience unequivocally supports the film. We have seen films like Kranti and others carry similar prospects but the films have surrendered sooner than expected because they could not entice the audience at large. 

The Kannada version (also the original) of Kantara is said to have collected a little over Rs. 162 crores (nett) and team Kabzaa could certainly hope to go past this figure in their pursuit of ultimate glory.

KGF: Chapter 1 Box Office

Although we have already discussed this, there is the necessity to bring in the KGF films again for more than one reason. First, as already pointed out, KGF 2 is quite the unattainable target at this point with respect to the box office and it wouldn't be unfair in saying that Kabzaa, despite all its merits, may not get to that pinnacle. 

With that out of the way, let's shine a light on this: Kabzaa has been heavily modelled on the KGF films in terms of the visual palette, the larger-than-life milieu and the period gangster setting, and since we are discussing box office, the more reachable target for the film is, of course, KGF Chapter 1. If Kabzaa is worth all the hype and the hoo-ha, then it can surely be expected to go past the first instalment of the Rocky Bhai saga. One might even assert that given that R. Chandru and co. have borrowed so much from the Hombale Films production, it is almost obligated to deliver big.