Diwali is merely three weeks away and moviegoers are already excited to witness the clash between Akshay Kumar-starrer Ram Setu and Ajay Devgn-Sidharth Malhotra starrer Thank God. Both movies will release in cinemas on Tuesday, October 25. However, there’s one more film in the race – the Hollywood superhero flick, Black Adam. Interestingly, it’ll release earlier, on October 21 and many in the trade and exhibition sector believe that it can be the dark horse of the season.
A source told Bollywood Hungama, “There’s tremendous excitement for Black Adam globally as it’s a DC film. Moreover, it stars Dwayne Johnson, who has a huge following in India. What also works in its favour is that there hasn’t been a big-scale commercial Hollywood film in a long time. The last such film to release was Thor: Love And Thunder, which came out on July 8. Due to these reasons, Black Adam can score at the ticket window.”
A section of trade is also concerned with the release period. It releases in the pre-Diwali time when the box office takes a beating. Moreover, clashing with Ram Setu and Thank God can also prove detrimental. But the source assured that Warner Bros, the studio that has produced Black Adams, is already working on getting a wide release for the film.
The source stated, “The Warner Bros team wants the film to release simultaneously across the globe. Since it’s releasing in the West and other major markets around October 21, it was decided to release the film in India on the same day. As of now, it is expected to release in 1800 to 2000 screens across the nation in the original English version as well in the dubbed Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu versions.”
The source continued, “The trade in the West is confident of the film. It is expected to gross around $70 million in the opening weekend in the USA/Canada. By releasing Black Adam in the pre-Diwali period, the Warner team in India hopes to build on word of mouth so that the audiences turn up to the cinemas in hordes from October 25. Of course, it is expected to lose 400-500 screens thanks to Ram Setu, Thank God and the Southern releases. Multiplexes will also reduce some shows to accommodate the Hindi releases. Yet, it’ll be more than enough to put up a good number at the box office, provided word of mouth is positive.”
Nevertheless, the clash of three big films has already raised tension among trade and exhibitors. An exhibitor said, “We all remember what happened during the clash of Sooryavanshi and Eternals in Diwali 2021. But then there are times when things haven’t turned that ugly. For example, the issues during the clash between Raksha Bandhan and Laal Singh Chaddha got resolved quickly. Warner Bros, meanwhile, had also managed to release The Matrix Resurrections alongside Pushpa, Spider-Man: No Way Home and ’83. Hence, we are hoping for the best.”
However, an industry expert reminded us, “It’s a four-way clash, especially in Maharashtra, as the big-budget Marathi film, Har Har Mahadev, will also be releasing on October 25. God save the exhibitors this Diwali!”