Agent Vinod will be in the theatres by the time this article appears. As on today, the film has held its traction and has by and large maintained its FTI score. I expect the movie to do quite well in multiplexes in metros and meet the industry expectations on the box office collections and open in the range of Rs 20-24 crore during the first weekend.
Marketing of films has come a long way from bill boards to digital advertising. In the last few years the bar has been raised with a 360-degree carpet bombing of the audience’ mind by large films. Recently we have been watching the trailers going beyond the traditional single trailers with a two or three minute runs. Agent Vinod started with a teaser and got much of the ‘Story Expectation’ factor rolled out in its latest trailer. A single trailer could not have created the ‘Expectations’ of the film well enough to create the desired interest in watching the movie. Most of the traction that this film has gained is largely due to continuously engaging the audience with more than one audio-visual piece. The bits and pieces about the film enable the audience to build a mental collage that helps to push the interest in the film upwards. The roll out of the promos of the film has been done quite intelligently.
Despite a good promo and a good film, a good planning of marketing and advertising is crucial to the opening of a film. One of the problems that a media planner faces is to decide on the percentage of the potential audience the advertising should reach and also the number of times they should be exposed to the advertising. Till date there is no magic formula to decide these number a priori. It is possible to decide on the media pressure through a continuous tracking of a few parameters like Awareness, Interest etc.
The film to watch in April is Housefull 2. The current FTI of Housefull 2 is estimated to be around 35, down from 41 last week. This is, not unusual when a film that is tracking well, like Agent Vinod, is yet to be released. But films that have an FTI above 40 will quickly make up the loss and I expect Housefull 2 to regain its FTI numbers next week. Also, since pieces of Malaika Arora Khan’s Anarkali disco chali and Right now, now are available on the net these song sequences will push the film’s FTI further up in the next couple of weeks.
Life Reboot Nahi Hoti is another romantic comedy that we have been tracking but shows very little presence in FilmTrac. The film is full of fresh faces and has made no effort to make its presence felt in mass media. Hence, the film has not tracked at all. I see similar numbers for most of the films scheduled for release in the last week of March and in April this year.
Blood Money, starring Kunal Khemu, is a Mahesh Bhatt’s film. Set in South Africa the film is a thriller. The theatrical trailer of the movie is excellent and has a reasonably good score on PoP value. Despite big names like Mahesh and Mukesh Bhatt behind it, the tracking is poor and I do not expect this film to make an impression at the box office.