Kapoor and Sons opened in Pakistan! What the heck? A movie with a gay main character is allowed to play, but Neerja isn’t? I guess it really is about patriotism, not religion. Or else Karan’s clever avoidance of actually using the word “gay” (or boyfriend or homosexual or anything else specific) paid off.
Remember last week when the regional films beat the Hindi basically everywhere? And I pointed out that it was partly due to the excellence of the regional options, but also due to the lameness of the Hindi options (Jai Gangaajal and Neerja in week 4)?
Well, I think I was right, because now that there is a decent Hindi option available again, something popular and fresh, all the regional stuff has sunk back down. Especially in Australia and New Zealand where the success of Ardaas and Love Punjab was most noticeable. And it wasn’t just a screen thing either, the regional films actually kept their screens for the most part, Kapoor and Sons just sold more tickets per screen. Like, a lot more. In Australia, Kapoor and Sons had 17 screens to Ardaas‘ 16, and made almost twice as much money ($136,356 to $77,453). In New Zealand, Kapoor and Sons had 13, to 8 each for Ardaas and Love Punjab, so not that big of a screen difference, and made almost 3 times as much.
Also in New Zealand, and I don’t even understand how this is possible, Neerja made $19 on 7 screens. So, is that like one $2.25 ticket per screen? Or did they just not play it for most showtimes, but still included the screens in the total count?
Most surprising to me is that Kapoor and Sons beat a regional film in Malaysia. The Hindi films never win Malaysia! I’ve got nothing to explain it. Do any of the actors have some kind of massive Tamilian following? How did Fawad’s soap do down there?
And, as I already mentioned, it played in Pakistan. And the UAE. But, how? Did the whole gay plot just go over their heads? Was it cut out? How else could that possibly have been interpreted? Or maybe I just think Pakistan and the UAE are more conservative about those issues than they actually are.
Oh, and it did phenomenally in America. But we always knew it would, it is clearly a multiplex/diaspora film. The distributors had faith in it as well, gave it 143 screens, which is a lot for a non-Star film. Airlift, for instance, only got 98 screens. I mean, I’m guessing it being a Fox Star production helped a little. But still, they clearly knew this was a movie for the diaspora. It wasn’t just the number of screens though, the per screen was also really really good, $5,800.
I’ll be curious how it does in the second weekend, I’m guessing these initial figures include both people who were intrigued by the trailer and the potentially groundbreaking plot/filming style, and people who just came in blind based on the songs and the Dharma name. And if so, are those people who came in just for a Karan Johar Production going to recommend it or not?
The only place where Kapoor and Sons did not win is Canada, where Love Punjab still reigns. So even if it was able to win over the Tamilians in Malaysia by some unknown magic, the Punjabis in Canada aren’t so easy.
(oh, and Jai Gangaajal continues to do embarrassingly bad. Why is no one talking about this? Is it because expectations were so low anyway that it isn’t even a news story?)