Bollywood releases about 200+ movies per year including the low budget to the big budget movies with popular actors cast in them. Recently the upcoming movie which has Hritik Roshan and Saif Ali Khan as the lead actors has been making some buzz on social media. Bollywood movie enthusiasts are divided on it (excluding the fan base of the actors) and the rest who watch a movie in passing, like me, are quite apathetic to the positive or the negative buzz the movie is generating. So, can we predict how it is going to fare at the box office?
Vikram Vedha is yet another remake, of a 2017 Tamil movie of the same name which had R Madhavan and Vijay Sethupathi starring in it. For years now Bollywood has been copying this formula of ‘copy-paste’ from Hollywood and Tamil, Telegu or Malayalam movies. However, in recent times the industry is seeing a decline in the public interest to adopt and watch these copied products. The Hindi adaptation with Bollywood star cast is just not going to cut it any longer. This is good when it comes to the freshness of script and originality of story. The movie makers who have developed the tendency to serve copied stories in the guise of ‘remake’ to make a quick buck will need to adapt or perish. It is going to get even more interesting going forward. The audience has changed in these 2 years of pandemic. An average Bollywood movie goer who had not seen any of the Hollywood flicks before the pandemic has become smarter with a raised standard of expectance for what they might subject themselves to for entertainment. The quicker the movie makers understand this fact, the better.
This is attested by the fact that how badly movies like Lal Singh Chaddha, Liger, Do bara, Brahmastra bombed at the box office. The audience completely rejected them. The audience either did not like the story, the execution or the snooty behavior of so called ‘stars’ who have started to consider themselves much above the audience. This is due to the fact that the lockdown introduced the average middle-class audience to streaming platforms such as Netflix, Prime, Disney Hotstar, etc., which not only served them with any Bollywood movies they might like to watch from the comfort of their home but also introduced them to the world of international cinema which in turn made them realize just how good a story and its execution can be. It also made them painfully aware of the pathetic quality of the Bollywood movies which they have been served with so far.
This will be the greatest adversity which the new Vikram Vedha movie will need to face and overcome if it wants to do good business. Will the audience make an exception this time? Will the actors be able to perform equal or even come close to the stalwarts Madhavan and Sethupathi? Or will Bollywood go over the top like usual and blow every bad thing out of proportion? This remains to be seen. Vikram Vedha was a recent 2017 release which means obviously many people have seen it and is still fresh in the memories of the public since it was also watched on OTT platforms and even YouTube. The hurdles in the path of the new remake are one too many.
Personally, I am not remotely interested in watching it. But then I very rarely go and watch Bollywood movies in movie theatres anyway. As usual, I will see how it fares in the market and if it proves to be any good, I will watch it when it is released on OTT. In my opinion it will be a failure, optimistically an average movie.