Rajinikanth’s Kabali: Box-Office Expectations

With pulsating trailer and teasers, Kabali is all set to release on July 22. SpotboyE talks to the industry to analyse its prospects

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Rajinikanth’s Kabali: Box-Office Expectations
As the release of Rajinikanth’s Kabali nears, the buzz around the film is undisputable. The 65-year old actor’s movie also stars Radhika Apte as his love interest.

Reportedly, Kabali has already earned Rs 200 crore through its satellite and music rights.

The Hindi version of Kabali is set to release in more than 5000 screens across 
the world. Will this affect the box-office run of Salman's Sultan? 

Two hours.
That’s all it took for tickets of Kabali to be sold out, at 400 theatres across the US. And the demand for the tickets in his gaon Tamil Nadu has been unprecedented. Manoj Desai, Executive Director, Gaiety Galaxy confesses,“Rajini movies always sell.”

Kabali’s music is sounding fresh and groovy, with beautiful melodies as well. It 
looks like Rajini would totally boss an anti-hero character with ease. 

Singh Jyala, VP, Programming & Distribution, Inox Cinemas, says, “I am a big Rajini fan and I know that his last two movies (Lingaa and Kochadiiyaan) didn’t click. But there has been a tremendous response for advance booking enquiries. We know tomorrow when the bookings open we will be ‘Sold Out’. I have seen fans going crazy in the theatres. When we screen Rajini’s ventures, it is just an out of the world experience to watch them.”

We also spoke to the experts -- but they were trading very cautiously.

Ramesh Sippy, a leading distributor, says “Kabali promises to be a better film 
than Rajini’s last two movies. There is definitely South India craze that will never fade away for him. The Hindi dubbed version hasn’t been promoted well at all, so I doubt that will affect Sultan in any way. South Indian Pockets like Matunga, Mahalaxmi will do well -- but it doesn’t look like that it will enjoy the success Robot had. I am not very sure if Rajinikanth playing an anti-hero will work here.”

Though Kochadiiyaan was an ambitious film, it used the motion capture 
technology for the first time in India abd it didn’t leave a mark. Lingaa too failed with a loss of 70% of its expenses. But the frenzy for Kabali is amazing considering Rajinikanth plays an anti-hero. Bollywood Trade analyst, Komal Nahta, opens up saying “Rajinikanth’s fan base has not reduced even after his last two flops so that will not affect the film’s success. In Mumbai or North India, it may not take a great start as promotions here were low key -- but I hope it does great business. The trailer sets the mood for such a character, but we will have to wait and see.”

Now, let’s go over to the public jo sab jaanti hai:

Nikhil Krishnan (23): I have never felt that Rajini movies generally satisfy an audience who appreciate classy and quality movie making. Having said that, I have always been awestruck by the popularity of this personality and the presence he has on screen topped by no one else. His movies can be considered of a different genre altogether.

The music in my opinion is the main reason that the expectations have hit the 
roof for this Rajni movie. The power packed music combined with the unmatched on screen presence of Rajini gives even a non Rajini fan like me goosebumps.

Rinaa Kapoor (44): Being a Punjabi, I believe Kabali should be a runaway hit. Rajinikanth is majorly playing his age for the first time. I look forward to great Rajini style action, music and wholesome entertainment. Having a fan following mainly among South Indians, Kabali may not break Salman Sultan's records -- but you can never predict Rajini fans. They can make anything happen! The music sounds appealing even though I don't understand a word of the lyrics. Rajinikanth looks charismatic and the director has done his best to cash in on this.

Krishna Kumar (33): I’ve always been a Kamal Haasan fan, never a Rajini fan--but no matter whose fan you are, a Rajini film is always something to look forward to. I expect Rajini to bounce back into form with Kabali. Yes, his last 2 films were unmitigated disasters but that’s what Rajini does when faced with failure, he comes back with a bang!
I’m looking forward to Kabali being a well-made film - strong on script and characterization. I also expect it to be a reboot of the Rajinikant franchise, keeping in mind the evolving tastes of the audience. Instead of it being a film which will showcase Rajini-the star, I hope it exploits Rajni-the actor. The song ‘Neruppu Da’ is just magic.

Narayani Menon (70): I have been a Rajini fan for the past 20 years.Somehow, he has a knack for making even the most absurd stunts believable.
He is inspiring -- he shows you how age is not a barrier if you are truly passionate about something. Kabali will be a huge box-office success. But
having said that, actors like Rajini are beyond hits and flops. His appeal is timeless.

Syamala Kumar (53): Though I am not a fan of Rajinikanth, I have watched most of his films. His success is attributed mainly to his mannerisms and style. Rajini films are for the masses, not for the intellectuals. Hence, their reach and acceptance is wide. So, an occasional flop won't affect his popularity ever. Let’s hope that Rajinikanth doesn’t score a hattrick with Kabali at the ticket windows. Come Friday, we shall know.

Image Source: youtube/Kalaippuli S Thanu 
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