Inarguably the most hyped release of 2010, Kites starring Hrithik Roshan and Barbara Mori finally released last weekend. The film had been aggressively marketed given the lack of other movies to make an impact at the Indian box office, other than the recent comedy Housefull. But Kites failed to impress in India as well as overseas.
In the UK Kites was expected to collect half-a-million pounds in its opening weekend (including Thursday previews), but the film collected half of what was expected, despite the massive number of screens it was released in. In fact, the screen average of Kites is lower than Jodhaa Akbar, Dhoom 2, Krrish, Koi Mil Gaya, Main Prem Ki Diwani Hoon, Mujhse Dosti Karogi, K3G, Yaadein and Fiza.
In USA the film featured in the Top 10 list, which is very, very praiseworthy, but given the number of screens (208), the opening weekend numbers are disappointing. The film just about managed to collect a mere $958,673. The film should have collected between 1.75 million to 2 million in its opening weekend, just going by the number of screens. Here too, the screen average of Kites is lower than Jodhaa Akbar, Dhoom 2, Krrish, Lakshya, Koi Mil Gaya and Main Prem Ki Diwani Hoon.
While comparisons are being made with the collections of 3 Idiots and MNIK in India, lets see how these two big films have performed in the USA.
My Name is Khan was the other big film of 2010. Expectations were as high, if not higher because of the hit jodi. And this project also had big names associated with it. It released on the 12th of February in the USA across 120 theatres. MNIK earned $1,944,027 in its opening weekend and was ranked 13th on the chart.
3 Idiots is a movie everybody just loved. People had huge expectations as the film was based on the best selling novel “Five Point Someone” by Chetan Bhagat. Besides that, it brought back the hit team of the Munnabhai series, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Raju Hirani. 3 Idiots released on 23 december 2009 across 119 screens and earned $1,645,502 in its opening weekend and got ranked 12th on the chart.
Judging from the above figures, Kites didn’t have a huge opening in the USA as is made to let us all believe. As you can see, 3 Idiots and MNIK released in less theatres and both earned a lot more.
How Kites reached the top 10 is a question that will remain unanswered. The fact that there have been no big American releases except Iron Man 2 might be one of the reasons.
According to Roshan, the foreign press has appreciated the film and they’re just judging Kites with no strings attached. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the audience is staying away despite these good reviews.
Roshan told the Bombay Times on Tuesday that he was justified in trying something different and that the movie had given Bollywood a new profile internationally. “I have been feeding this biryani-loving audience typical fare like ‘Dhoom 2′ and ‘Krrish’ but here I am saying, ‘Try some pasta as well’,” he said.
A 90-minute version of the movie released this past Friday. Maybe that version will work it’s magic at the Box Office.