Bollywood banks on superhero saga “Krrish 3″

October 31, 2013

Actor Hrithik Roshan returns as Krrish this Friday in the third instalment of the namesake film series, which pits the Indian superhero against a new villain out to destroy the world. “Krrish 3” opens two days before Diwali, India’s festival of lights and traditionally a time of Bollywood blockbuster movie premieres.

The film, made for an estimated 800 million rupees ($13 million), is coming out in 3,600 movie screens across India — a record — and is expected to pull in crowds with Hollywood-style special effects and a healthy dose of Indian “family values”.

“This is a film that appeals to pretty much everyone, and kids especially. They are the ones who will drag the families in,” said Shailesh Kapoor of research firm Ormax Media. “Also, it is the Diwali weekend, and a time when people are looking for entertainment and willing to spend.”

Diwali is the festival of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, and is traditionally the season for giving sweets as gifts to family, friends and employees. People also invest in gold, buy new clothes or electronic gadgets during the festive season.

“Krrish 3″ director Rakesh Roshan is releasing the film ahead of Diwali, betting that more people will show up than if he waits.

“I know it is a risk, to release the film two days before the event, but this time it is the weekend, and that gives me a good window,” Roshan said.

The gamble might pay off if people decide that the cinema is the best place to spend their weekend.

“This way, he gets a clean 10-day reign. Unless the content is really bad and the movie gets panned, the film should cross the 100 crore (1 billion) rupee mark by Tuesday,” said Kapoor.

Shah Rukh Khan‘s “Chennai Express” is India’s highest-grossing film so far, opening in 3,500 screens earlier this year and making about 2.3 billion rupees ($37 million) in domestic ticket sales. Analysts said the box-office record could be broken soon, given the surge in the number of multiplex cinemas and rising ticket prices.

“As long as it isn’t bad, and people get to see some good action, this movie will make money,” Kapoor said.

Rakesh Roshan, a Bollywood actor who turned to directing, has made most of his recent films with son Hrithik. His projects, including the Krrish” films, are usually a mix of romance and jazzy dance numbers. The second “Krrish” was a blockbuster seven years ago.

The filmmaker hasn’t revealed the official budget of “Krrish 3″, though he said he cut costs wherever he could, animating scenes before filming them to save time and ensuring no resources were wasted.

“I’m too scared to look at the account books now. I’ll look at them on Friday, when numbers start coming in,” Roshan said.

(Editing by Tony Tharakan and Robert MacMillan; Follow Shilpa on Twitter @shilpajay, Tony @tonytharakan and Robert at @bobbymacReports. This article is website-exclusive and cannot be reproduced without permission)

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