India’s limited-overs captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s biopic releases in nearly 3,500 screens around India and the expection surrounding the movie has never been higher. Sushant Singh Rajput, who plays the role of Dhoni in the movie “MS Dhoni: The Untold Story” has already captivated the attention of the audience who are just clamoring for the release of the movie based on India’s most successful captain.
When the stakes are as high as this, the expectations surrounding the movie as well are immense. Not just in terms of how it is perceived by the audience and the critics but also in terms of how much money it rakes in at the box office. Releasing in around 3,500 screens in India and over 1,000 screens around the world, it is already the second-biggest release of 2016 behind only Salman Khan’s Sultan.
Given Dhoni’s fan following and the hype surrounding the movie it is a foregone conclusion that it will do well at the Box Office. But how much does it need to make in order to be classified as a hit is a question that only trade analysts can answer. After all, a big budget movie needs to make a big mark if it is to do well.
While it is a biopic and only two such movies have grossed in excess of 50 crores in the last two years, it is but a foregone conclusion that the movie directed by Neeraj Pandey and also starring the likes of Disha Patani, Kiara Advani, Anupam Kher and Bhumika Chawla in lead roles.
The movie still has a lot of work to do to be certified as a hit. Given the cost of making the movie is touted to be around Rs. 100 crore, including MS Dhoni’s fee and a promotional budget of Rs.15 crore, the movie has to make Rs. 115 (approx) just to break even.
Even before the release of the movie, it has already done well by bagging Rs. 10 crore for its music rights. Although STAR have the satellite rights, it is fair to sair that the movie will fetch in the region of around Rs. 30-35 as it is perfect for satellite and TV audience.
Although the music and satellite rights will be a boost, the movie still needs to double the remaining budget (Rs. 70 crore) to be tagged as a Box Office HIT. Making Rs.140 crore is not an easy task when you consider that the highest grossing Biopic over the past two years is Neerja which took home Rs.75 crore or just over half of what this movie has to make.
With the movie having cricket (India’s favorite past-time) and MS Dhoni (one of India’s beloved cricketers) at the centre of the story it will have a huge appeal in the A, B and C centers. So it has a fair chance of making it into the Rs. 100 crore club.
Although the Neeraj Pandey movie doesn’t have a superstar at the helm, which would have easily ensured a opening day in excess of Rs. 20 crore, there is still no doubt that the movie will open in the high teens with the outside possibility of even hitting Rs. 20 crore,which would be the biggest opening for Sushant. And while the movie won’t reach the lofty heights of Sultan, it should still do enough to reach at least Rs. 50 crore in the opening weekend in just India.
That coupled with the international appeal and the number of screens that the movie is releasing in means that Dhoni’s biopic is all set to take the box office by storm and create history at least as far as biopics are concerned.