THE NEW YEAR BLUES!
The start of the New Year has always been a dismal performance at the box office for Hindi ﬁlms. This year much was expected from the Aashiqui-2 hitpair of Aditya Roy Kapur and Shraddha Kapoor in the Mani Ratnam remake of his hit ﬁ lm ‘Ok KadalMani’ adapted into Hindi by his ardent admirer and his assistant for many years, Shaad Ali who had earlier directed another Mani Ratnam hit ‘Saathiya’ which did quite well at the box office. But this time round something drastically went wrong for ‘OK JAANU’ as it was one of the most anticipated movie of the early start of 2017 and the Karan Johar and Dharma Productions bandwagon and Fox movies publicity blitz was doing all the right noises but the ﬁlm faltered after a good start and was a resounding ﬂop. The reasons might be many as the audience must have also expected something musically classic from the Mozart of Madras AR Rehman whose songs didn’t clearly click with the masses. The ﬁlm was technically good but the ﬁrst half didn’t clearly gel with the audiences And that left a void in the minds of the audiences as they were anticipating something extraordinary from the combination of Mani Ratnam’s Madras Talkies and Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions.
Also Aditya Roy Kapur is not really on the popularity poll on a high number as his popularity seems to be waning with ﬂops like Daawat-E- Ishq. Shraddha Kapoor, though a very good actress can’t really carry a ﬁlm on her delicate shoulders. This didn’t augur well for the year 2017 as this ﬂ op means that now producers and distributors and exhibitors will be wary of releasing their ﬁlm in the ﬁrst half of the year as, in the year 2016, there was only a single hit in the form of Akshay Kumar’s Airlift which did well and the rest of the ﬁlms didn’t really click with the audiences and history has repeated itself in the start of the year 2017. What might be the reason for this lackadaisical start at the beginning of the year? Is it because people are tired after celebrating Christmas and the New Year and this year maybe because of the various ﬁnancial problems the country might be facing, the audiences just didn’t have the money or the mood to go to the theaters or a multiplex and spend Rs, 1000- 2000 for a family viewing and this reﬂects in the box office performance of OK JAANU which after a promising start faltered at the ticket windows. Also the online booking is not very popular as a concept with the Indian audiences and this must have taken a heavy toll on the sale of the tickets. Like 2015 many small ﬁlms were released alongside a big ﬁlm like OK JAANU which didn’t do much and the resounding success of DANGAL which released in the Christmas week must have hampered the box office prospects of all ﬁlms released later including OK JAANU as DANGAL was such a colossal box office hit that it smothered all the competition and that was one of the most signiﬁcant reason that the New year in 2017 was such a bleak one and especially for OK JAANU it was a huge setback. But now everything seems sorted and now the two biggies to release in KAABIL and RAEES will augur something well for the audiences as they have something to look forward to especially since it’s a holiday weekend and the industry is praying that a miracle takes place and both the ﬁlms do big business at the box office. Que Sera Sera!