When 'Karthikeya 2' was released last week, it struggled to get an adequate number of shows for itself in the Hindi belt. It started with barely 100 shows or so. And now, the number has gone up to 700. As per a trade report, its Day 1 India nett. figure stood at Rs 7 lakh. The figure was Rs 1 Cr on Monday, which was the movie's third day at the box office. One crore rupees for a Nikhil Siddhartha film in the Hindi market in India is truly astonishing.
'Karthikeya 2' is expected to have even more shows in Hindi after this Friday, when many theatres will opt out of 'Laal Singh Chaddha' and 'Raksha Bandhan'. If the mystical adventure film collects something like Rs 15 Cr in Hindi by the end of its run, it will be truly phenomenal.
And the film's success must already be making many Telugu heroes green with envy. 'Pushpa', 'RRR' and the 'Baahubali' movies making it big in Hindi was not a huge surprise. They were big-scale movies whose collective budget ran into hundreds of crores. 'Karthikeya 2' has shown that you don't have to spend one billion rupees to hope for traction for your movie among the Hindi audience. You can make a film for the Telugu audience with sincerity, add some universal themes like Lord Krishna-ism and see where it goes on a pan-Indian scale.
If you don't score a pan-India hit at a time like this, you are not receiving the right stories. That's the new narrative that is building up already.
As long as only the top-tier Telugu stars like Prabhas and Allu Arjun scored big hits in Hindi, medium-range heroes could duck comparisons. But now, a medium-range hero is scoring a pan-India hit. Those who regard themselves as star heroes in Tollywood will have to catch up!