The upcoming last quarter is always the most interesting, where you have all the big films lined up for release. October 7 marks the debut of industry kid Harshvardhan Kapoor in Mirzya, whose music is just growing. It’s also been a while since Gulzar saab wrote a screenplay and everyone is looking forward to that. Then we have Ajay Devgn’s Shivaay releasing on Diwali. The audience are in love with the title track. After that, we will have a sequel month, with the release of sequels like Rock On 2, Tum Bin 2, Force 2 and Kahaani 2. Then there is also Dear Zindagi, which features Shah Rukh Khan and Alia Bhatt, a high-content film. Then there is Aditya Chopra’s directorial Befikre.
But the film that will take collections to another level is Aamir Khan’s Dangal. This year so far has not been as good as last year because many big films didn’t work at the box office. Now all eyes are on the last quarter, which has the potential to be very fruitful at the box office.
The upcoming quarter will be a game-changer as far as accumulated collections of the year 2016 go, vis-à-vis the previous year. The next three months have ‘winner’ written all over them and with the festival and holiday season coming up, expect nothing but triumph. With films like Shivaay, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, Befikre, Force 2, Kahaani 2, Dangal, Dear Zindagi and Tum Bin 2 hitting the silver screen, we cannot expect anything less than great numbers. These films will deliver the perfect marriage of content and commercials.
Much like in real life, coming in at the closing stages, M.S. Dhoni The Untold Story releasing on September 30 will inject much needed momentum to the proceedings in the last quarter (calendar year) or Q3 (financial year). The lyrical Mirzya opens in the first week of October. Debuting along with Harshvardhan Kapoor and Saiyami Kher are music composers Ajay-Atul as producers of the political satire Jaunda Na Balasaheb, followed by Inferno, another thriller from Dan Brown, and Tom Cruise will be back in Jack Reacher.
This Diwali will be good as the spoils will be shared between Ae Dil Hain Mushkil and Shivaay, both genres catering to their target audiences. We hope that Benedict Cumberbatch’s magic is amplified by the Marvel touch in Dr. Strange and that Hollywood animation continues its popular march with Trolls. Ang Lee seems to be all set to repeat his magic with the drama Billy Lynn’s Halftime Walk and of course Indian animation strides confidently with Chaar Sahibzaade 2.
We hope that J K Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts is able to cast a strong spell at the BO along with Force 2 and Tum Bin 2. Life gets better with Dear Zindagi and the period-piece spy-thriller, starring the gorgeous Marion Cotillard and Brad Pitt. Lips work overtime in Aditya Chopra’s Befikre. Finally, we hope the hangover of India’s success at the Olympics and Paralympics will create enough Dangal at the box office!
This year, we have major action in Q4. Starting with M.S. Dhoni… which could kick start Q4 in a big way, we then have a young star with Mirzya, and then Diwali with two big-budget movies – Shivaay and Ae Dil Hai Mushkil to celebrate. November brings a mixed bag with all franchisee movies that will surely get a good opening, namely Rock On 2, Kahaani 2 and Force 2.
December with Aamir Khan can always be trusted. Befikre with the Ranvir Singh and Yash Raj Films combination can take the box office to another level. Overall, at Cinepolis, we have added 20 per cent capacity in terms of the number of screens, so with around 275 screens, in Q4 2016, we expect at least 25 per cent growth over 2015.
The movie business here, is divided in two halves’- the first half of the year and the second half of the year. In India, the second half is of critical importance as many of our festivities fall in that half. Eid, Dussera, Diwali and Christmas are golden days that can make or break a movie’s trajectory. Last year, movies like Talvar, Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2, Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, Hate Story-3 and Bajirao Mastani, performed reasonably well. Yet, movies with extensive promotional hype such as Singh is Bling, Shaandaar, Jazbaa, Tamasha and Dilwale, performed poorly at the Box Office, despite being released in the latter half of the financial year.
This year, expectations from movies like Mirzya, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, Shivaay, Rock On-2, Tum Bin-2, Force-2, Dear Zindagi, Kahaani 2, Befikre and Dangal, have been already set. This may be due to their stellar casting or prior success of movies such as Rock On, Tum Bin, Kahaani and Force, whose sequels are set to release. India is famed for movie clashes and this time there is a significant movie clash happening in Diwali, instead of Christmas, like last year. Owing to this stellar line up, we hope to see a neat turnover gracing us this year.