Salman Khan ’s Eid release, Bharat also starring Priyanka Chopra, is set to hit the big screen on 5th June 2019. The film release will coincide with the Cricket World Cup which will be held in England next year. Just like movies, Indian’s are extremely passionate about cricket and seldom do we see big films releasing during the big ICC Cricket Events like World Cup.
The 2015 and 2011 cricket world cup saw no major releases, and the only films which managed to get some sort of recognition at the ticket window on a small scale were Dum Laga Ke Haisha and Tanu Weds Manu. Although the films were not monstrous hits, they did get a limited section of audience in the cinema hall. While India went on to win the 2011 World Cup, the cricket team went till the Semi-Final in the 2015 tournament. In the year 2007, the only big release during the World Cup was Namastey London.
The film also got the benefit of India’s early exit from the World Cup in 2007 and was a reasonably successful film. Other film that managed to get a Hit Status during 2007 world cup was Bheja Fry, however yet again the success was on a small scale.
Coming to 2003, when India reached the World Cup Finals, no significant Hindi film released during the span of tournament and it was indeed an extremely dull phase at the ticket window. The fear of producers to not get the audience in cinema hall during the big cricket tournament has been seen year after year, as Bollywood has shied away from releasing the big films in the span.
1999 World Cup was the only year in the recent past wherein a film managed to emerge a humongous success at the Box-Office, despite facing fierce competition from the world cup matches. Salman Khan and David Dhawan’s comic entertainer, Biwi No. 1 was one of the biggest hit of the year despite releasing in a considerably dull phase. Even Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam released during the 1999 world cup, however by the time of film’s release, India was knocked out of the World Cup.
Basically, in last 20 years, the only film which has managed to emerge a massive success amidst the cricket world cup is Biwi No. 1 and now it seems that the history might repeat itself. Khan’s Eid 2019 release Bharat is expected to release on 5th June 2019, which happens to be the day the on which India play their opening match of the tournament against South Africa. In the first 10 days of it’s release, India would be playing four crucial matches against South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Pakistan. While the match against South Africa would take place on the opening day of the film, India would face Australia and Pakistan on the first and second Sunday of the film respectively, which happens to be the key business days.
While the film has a disadvantage on these four days as a considerable chunk of audience in India would be glued onto their television set, it also has an advantage in the form of festive weekend and absolutely no competition for the coming few weeks. The world-cup season seldom sees a lot of film release and going by the trend, Bharat should get clear 3 to 4-week window at the Box-Office. The money lost by the film initially can be made up in the long run provided that the film commands a positive world of mouth.
Will Bharat repeat magic created by Biwi No. 1 at the Box-Office amidst the cricket world-cup? Do let us know.