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Veere Di Wedding vs Bhavesh Joshi: Who will emerge a winner?

Sonam Kapoor's Veere Di Wedding and Harshvardhan Kapoor's Bhavesh Joshi Superhero face a sibling clash at the box office. However, the girls stand a better chance than the superhero on opening day, suggests the film trade.

Shriram Iyengar

The decision to push the release date of actor Harshvardhan Kapoor's Bhavesh Joshi Superhero to 1 June came as a surprise to many. Primarily because the date puts the film in direct opposition to a more glossy, fun film riding on the names of actresses Kareena Kapoor Khan and Sonam Kapoor-starrer Veere Di Wedding. It also stars Swara Bhasker and Shikha Talsania.

A press statement from the makers of Bhavesh Joshi Superhero read, "The makers believe 1 June is a better date from a distributional point of view. It has a greater audience potential and is a safe distance away from holdover Hindi and English releases. The film will get better and more number of shows and 1 June as a date has a greater audience potential."

Harshvardhan to clash with sister Sonam Kapoor's Veere Di Wedding as Bhavesh Joshi gets postponed

The film, directed by Vikramaditya Motwane, does have several advantages going in its favour. The recent success of superhero films at the box office has opened the eyes of producers to a very hip urbane demographic ready for such stories. The recent blockbuster Avengers: Infinity War ended up with more than Rs200 crore nett at the box office. While Harshvardhan's film lacks the heft of a Marvel production, it is anyway not positioned to be a superhero film, but about a vigilante.

However, the film has garnered very little buzz in comparison with its competitor. While Veere Di Wedding has motored forward with its Instagram and Twitter-savvy leads like Sonam, Kareena, and Swara Bhasker, director Vikramaditya Motwane's Bhavesh Joshi Superhero has had fairly little presence in the social media domain.

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Motwane is a director known for his gritty and melancholic stories. In addition, Harshvardhan is still trying to establish his presence in the industry and lacks a certain star quality that other superhero films have. To compound the worries, the last most successful superhero film in Hindi was Krrish (2006). Since then, Shah Rukh Khan (Ra.One, 2011), Tiger Shroff (A Flying Jatt, 2016) and even Hrithik Roshan (Krrish 3, 2013) have failed in their efforts to create waves at the box office.

Trade analyst Atul Mohan concurs about the buzz. "Veere Di Wedding has a definite edge over Bhavesh Joshi Superhero because of Kareena, Sonam, and Swara teaming up. There is also a lot of face value associated with the film," he says.

The pre-release buzz, an important factor, has also been considerably in favour of director Shashanka Ghosh's film. Whether it be the return of Kareena in a film after two years or Sonam's post wedding return, or even the combination of the two actors together, social media is abuzz with conversation about the film.

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This, Mohan adds, gives Ghosh's film the edge. "A lot of celebrities and fans are tweeting and liking the tweets about Veere Di Wedding. There is certainly a buzz about the film." On the other hand, Bhavesh Joshi Superhero has slowly flown under the radar. The decision to postpone, while a strategic call, might have been due to various reasons of the lack of buzz, or available screens.  

Both films will be targeting the metro centres demographic for highest coverage considering their content. While the exact number of screens for the films are still unavailable, Mohan said, "Both the films will have, more or less, a similar number of screens. Both are targeting mainly a metro audience due to their content." The availability of the screens is also countered by the continued strong presence of Meghna Gulzar's Raazi, and the decent performance of John Abraham's recent Parmanu: The Story Of Pokhran.

With the success of Raazi, 2018 has already seen a female-driven film show the way. Shashanka Ghosh's Veere Di Wedding boasts of two major female leads, in addition to a strong feminist theme. Despite the sibling connection, Harshvardhan might find this battle too hard to win, even as Bhavesh Joshi Superhero.