South Indian movie Bahubali 2: The Conclusion is set to see a record-breaking opening in the Nepali box office with cinema halls across the country witnessing aggressive bookings a day before its release. Operators of major cinema halls in the country have reported that the craze for the sequel for the 2015 South Indian blockbuster is unprecedented and the movie is set to do exceptionally well in the Nepali market.
Directed by SS Rajamouli, Bahubali 2 answers the famous question of ‘Why did Katappa kill Bahubali?” Bahubali: The Beginning, the first movie, closed with this remark, raising curiosity among cine goers.
Gopi Krishna Movies, one of the pioneers in Nepal’s cinema and distribution industry, has acquired distribution rights of the Hindi version of the movie at a whooping price of Rs 50, million making it the most expensive film released in the country till date. Previously, Gopi Krishna had paid a record Rs 40 million to acquire the distribution right for the Aamir Khan-starrer Dangal.
“People are going crazy for Bahubali. This kind of craze was visible during the release of movies like Raja Hindustani and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in the 90s, but never since,” Niraj Poudel, managing director of Gopi Krishna Movies told the Post.
Raja Hindustani starring Amir Khan was released in 1996 while Shah Rukh Khan starrer Kuch Kuch Hota Hai released in 1998. Concept of first-day-first-show, according to industry insiders, has seen a dramatic decline in recent years as entertainment options available have diversified.
Bahubali, however, is set for a massive opening day. Gopi Krishna Movies has stated that the movie is being screened in 130 cinema halls across the country from Friday. Apart from distribution, the company also operates theatre in Kathmandu and gauging the craze, Gopi Krishna has decided to screen Bahubali 2 in five of its seven theatres situated in Chabahil.
Leading multiplex chain QFX Cinemas too has witnessed a surge in interest for the movie. According to Team Quest’s Chief Executive Officer, Roshan Adiga, bookings at QFX Cinemas chain have been phenomenal and the company is expecting maximum occupancy on the opening weekend. “Fifty percent of the tickets scheduled for Friday and Sunday were booked within two hours,” Adiga said, adding that tickets for Friday and Saturday had been sold out by Thursday evening.
QFX has nine screens in Kathmandu. The company also has theatres in cities like Chitwan, Pokhara and Nepaljung. In Kathmandu, the company has allocated 24 shows and 25 shows on Friday and Saturday respectively. Another major multiplex Big Movies and Fcube, which have three screens each, have scheduled 15 shows per day on Friday.
In India, the film is expected to shatter all records on its first weekend. According to the Times of India, one million movie’s ticket was sold within 24 hours of them being available in the country. Likewise, theatres have reportedly increased ticket charge and have even scheduled shows at 4 am to accommodate the high demand.