BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN is on verge of crossing the footfalls of PK. It has fallen short of PK in terms of a benchmark like net gross and the distributor share will be a little short but the footfalls are certain to go over PK. This would make it the most watched film this decade and the second most watched film this century.
The footfalls are not that important to the industry as most in the production and distribution sector would rather have more money by raising ticket rates than getting more footfalls but in terms of appreciation and star power these are important.
Twenty five years ago most things were equal and more business meant more people watching the film but today with higher weekend rate raising rates even higher for holiday releases and then trying to keep them up on weekdays, it is all distorted and not an equal playing field. Here both PK and BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN had raised ticket rates but PK managed to hold them higher for longer due to the Xmas and New Year period.
In the first week, if we look at the five major chains then PK had 4.50 crore nett more business but its footfalls were 50,000 less than BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN as ticket rates for PK were held higher for longer. This is just the main chains and if we take other multiplexes, BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN should have done at least 6.50-7 crore net more in week one if ticket rates were not bought down on Tuesday. It would have made no difference to the business as the film was accepted and people would have paid.
The three week footfalls of BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN stand at a little less than 3.37 crore and PK finished at 3.50 crore. If we assume that BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN will have the same ATP (Average Ticket Price) in week four as in week three then it will be at 3.50 crore footfalls after four weeks. The ATP may come out a little higher as multiplexes are contributing more now but it will only be a matter of time as it will surely cross in week five because its not as if Brothers is going to stop its run totally. The fact that BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN has done better in the interiors has also added to its footfalls.
This will also mean that BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN will have a higher adjusted net gross in time as the yearly ticket rates emerge unless of course if the ATP comes down for 2016 or 2017 which would be very unlikely. There will be a 25 crore net gap between PK and BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN but it is down to three reasons.
1. Multiplex ticket prices especially week one
2. BAAHUBALI down South hit it for 10-12 crore net
3. Major competition in form of DRISHYAM came in week three.
It also means that a good film with correct distribution strategy, correct pricing, right timing and a little bit of luck with competition can go much higher than a BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN or PK and more importantly 4 crore footfalls is not a distant dream which it did look like in the mid 2000’s with the biggest blockbusters failing to get 2 crore people to the theatres.