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Box office: Salman Khan’s Race 3 smashes opening day record for Hindi film in 2018

Despite largely negative reviews, the action thriller earned Rs27.50 crore nett on its opening day.

Mayur Lookhar

The reviews have not been flattering, but seldom do reviews decide the fate of a Salman Khan film. Khan’s new offering, Race 3, has scored the biggest opening of 2018 by bagging Rs27.50 crore nett on its opening day, as reported by Boxofficeindia.com. The opening day figure was pegged at Rs29.17 crore nett by trade analysts Atul Mohan and Taran Adarsh. 

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There’s no disputing the fact that this is the biggest opening for a Hindi film in 2018 beating the Rs25 crore nett achieved by Tiger Shroff-starrer Baaghi 2 (2018). Hollywood blockbuster Avengers: Infinity War had the highest opening this year earning Rs30.75 crore nett. The Marvel film was released across 2,000 screens in India.

As per trade sources, Race 3 has been released in more than 4,000 screens in India. The film is made at an estimated budget of Rs100-110 crore. It is directed by choreographer Remo D'Souza and also features Bobby Deol, Jacqueline Fernandez, Anil Kapoor, Saqib Saleem and Daisy Shah.

Trade prediction: How will Salman Khan’s Race 3 do at the box office?

Khan’s last film Tiger Zinda Hai (2017) was released across 4,600 screens in India and had managed an opening of Rs34.12 crore nett. That film, though, was made at whopping budget of more than Rs200 crore. Khan has taken it upon himself to produce and distribute Race 3. Khan is said to have taken the satellite rights as his fees. Sources had told Cinestaan.com earlier that the satellite deal is in the range of Rs70-95 crore. Khan will be pocketing Rs75 crore for Race 3 through his multi-film digital deal with Amazon India. 

The reviews and the early word-of-mouth has not been great, but that is unlikely to cause a dent in the film’s business.

Trade analyst Atul Mohan says, “Salman Khan films have never got much critical acclaim. Bodyguard (2011) and Dabangg 2 (2012), too, at the most got one or two stars, but the two films did well at the box office. This is purely a film for the masses. I think the film will bag around Rs150-60 crore nett in week one. Even if just bags Rs50 crore nett in the second week, the film would still have made Rs200 crore nett. That is not bad considering the cost of production is not too high”

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What seems certain is that the Salman Khan the brand has worked for the Race franchise. Race 2 (2013) saw an opening of Rs14.38 crore nett. The film flopped as it could barely break even, earning Rs.93.48 crore nett. Race 2 was released across 3,200 screens and it had a budget of Rs94 crore. 

Race (2008), the first film in the franchise was made at budget of Rs46 crore and it went on to make a business of more than Rs60 crore nett. Race (2008) was only released across 1,300 screens in India. 

Race 3 is likely to draw in huge numbers today (the festival of Eid) and on Sunday. Atul Mohan expects the film to cross Rs40 crore on Eid. While Monday is likely to witness a drop, it looks like Race 3 could drive up its business in the opening weekend.