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Ae Dil Hai Mushkil v/s Shivaay: Day 1 may end in a draw

The stage is set for the biggest box-office clash of the year.

Keyur Seta

It's all set for the box-office clash of the year between Karan Johar’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Ajay Devgn’s Shivaay. With only a night to go before the battle is joined, the question in the minds of people from the industry and cinephiles is which film will win.

Both films have taken good starts in advance booking. So, as of now, it looks like the match will be drawn, at least on Day 1. This is also what trade analyst Amul Mohan believes.

“All depends on tomorrow’s collections," Mohan told Cinestaan.com. "It is very difficult to declare anyone a winner right now. The buzz for both films is strong and both are making the right noises. Both films cater to different markets. ADHM has an urban setting while Shivaay is more family-orientated. So, there is a clear divide in the audience.”

Mohan revealed that both films are being released on almost an equal number of screens, around 2200. 

Unlike other big films, the opening day may not see big numbers as it’s not a public holiday. “The combined total of both films’ earnings should be around Rs25 crore," Mohan said. "Both films should earn in the range of Rs12-13 crore. There is no pan-India holiday tomorrow. So, people won’t go to the theatres in hordes. Although there is a pre-Diwali festive mood, most offices are working.” 

Ae Dil Hai Mushkil has been in the news over the last few weeks for the controversy over Pakistani actor Fawad Khan, who has a role in the film, with the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), a small Maharashtra-based party, threatening to prevent the film's theatrical release after the terrorist attack on a military camp in Uri. The MNS withdrew the protest after Johar decided to donate Rs5 crore to the Indian army's welfare fund. 

Mohan believes the controversy and consistent news coverage has given the film an edge over Shivaay. “But let’s see how both films perform on Friday as this will give a clear picture what’s in store in the coming days,” he said.