Syed Sharjeel Askari
Upcoming major Pakistani films are likely to clash with the Cricket World Cup 2019. Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Azha are the most ideal times for the film producers in Pakistan to release their movies in order to generate massive box office collection in the first three days and this creates a much-needed buzz and the movie ends up being a success on most occasions.
This trend was started with Bilal Lashari’s “Waar”, which was released on Eid-ul-Azha in 2013, and it became an instant hit. This trend continued with movies releasing on both Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Azha the following years and all these movies did well at the domestic box office.
The most successful movies released on these festivals are Jawani Phir Nahin Ani, Punjab Nahin Jaungi, Jawani Phir Nahin Ani 2, Teefa in Trouble, Parwaz Hai Junoon, Wrong No, Mehrunisa V Lub U, Bin Roye, Janaan, etc.
This year we are expecting three major local releases on Eid-ul-Fitr. These movies include the highly anticipated “The Legend of Maula Jatt”, Wrong No 2, and Chhalawa, while we can expect these movies to do well at the box office, we cannot ignore the fact that Eid-ul-Fitr will coincide with the Cricket World Cup 2019. It is the most watched sporting mega event in Pakistan, scheduled to be be played from May 30 to July 14, 2019, and this clash may harm the overall box office collection of these movies.
Pakistan film industry is on the rise, and it is one of the top priorities of the local film producers, and distributors to release their films at the time when the maximum profit will be generated from screening of these movies.
There is no better time than releasing the major films on the occasions of Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Azha, where the movies get maximum number of shows, and a huge number of people flock to cinemas to watch these films. However, there must be a proper check on the calendar year and consider the mega events that may clash with the release of the movies, and how much this clash may harm the box office numbers of these flicks.
Upcoming major Pakistani films will clash with the Cricket World Cup 2019. The Cricket World Cup 2019 is a mega sporting event and no event is being followed in our country as much as the Cricket World Cup and this year during Eid-ul-Fitr, the Cricket World will be going on, which will surely have an impact on the box office collections of the movies coming out in June, especially on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr.
The most anticipated local movie of the year, The Legend of Maula Jatt is finally coming out this Eid-ul-Fitr, and many experts believe that this movie will break all the previous records of the box office, but when you live in a country where cricket is followed passionately by the people of all ages, cricket matches are being screened on the roads, public places, hotels and even cinemas, then how can you expect even the most anticipated movie to break these big records?
When the Cricket World Cup begins, the whole nation, especially the youth follows each and every match wherever they are. There will be so many big matches and the tournament is scheduled in England; therefore, most of the matches will start at 2:30pm and will end at 10pm according to the Pakistan standard time.
These are the peak hours and during the Cricket World Cup, people will be interested in watching these intense cricketing encounters and almost nothing else, and the cinemas will not have full-house audience even for the most anticipated movie.
The highly anticipated movie Maula Jatt may struggle to reach even Rs500 million at the global box office, if Pakistan cricket team performs well in the World Cup 2019. The Legend of Maula Jatt is likely to succeed at the box office, but may fall short of the expected numbers.
The other two movies releasing on Eid-ul-Fitr are Wajahat Rauf’s “Chhalawa” and Yasir Nawaz’s “Wrong No 2”. Both of these flicks are not big budget movies, and are expected to do well at the domestic box office. These movies will also not make money at the box office according to their potential owing to the clash with the mega sporting event, though, both of these films are likely to be successful and be accepted by the audience.
The romantic comedy “Wrong No 2” features Sami Khan and Neelam Muneer in lead roles; while rom-com “Chhalawa” features Azfar Rehman, Mehvish Hayat, Asad Siddiqui, and Zara Noor Abbas in lead roles. All of these upcoming Eid releases may succeed at the domestic box office, but due to the clash with the Cricket World Cup 2019, it is very likely that the earnings of these movies will be at least 20 percent less than the expected gross at the domestic box office, and in the worst case scenario, these movies may earn 40 percent less than the expected gross at the domestic box office.
The producers and distributors need to rethink their decision of releasing these three movies simultaneously on Eid-ul-Fitr due to the fact that now it is not about these movies competing against each other at the box office, but it is about these movies clashing with the most widely followed mega sporting event in the country, the Cricket World Cup 2019.
The release date of one or two of these movies should be pushed back to the middle of July, or possibly to the occasion of Eid-ul-Azha 2019 to earn maximum gross amount at the domestic box office.