Doubtful starter, break even, average grosser, hit, super hit and blockbuster- these are the adjectives that we have heard about movies in the first quarter of 2008. Amusingly, some or many of these descriptions of degrees of success have been associated with the same movie over a period of time. First there was Taare Zameen Par which opened in late December. Well, the trade was all praise for the effort of Aamir Khan but they felt that Welcome would be the bigger draw. They were right, but only for a few weeks. Welcome jolted a few records, made huge amounts of money and gradually slipped down the ratings. Meanwhile TZP stood rock steady (much like Dravid ‘The Wall’), the collections never failing and slowly a movie that was first seen as a masterpiece that would find it difficult to sustain the crowds was entering the hit zone. But obviously that was not good enough and the movie stood firm well into February even after the arrival of Jodha Akbar, collections steadily balanced as the word ‘super hit’ began to be thrown around. Then came March and TZP was relentless in its assault at the box office, standing well in the top 5 in the current week, poised to touch the 60 crore mark and earning a blockbuster status.
Even Jodha Akbar has gone through a similar sort of run, though over a shorter span. When it released on February 15th it was hailed as a class effort but its viability was doubted partially due to its length and also due to some pestering protests in some parts of the country. But the class of Jodha Akbar converted all the doubts to one big unanimous applause as it walked into March sitting on the edge of a super hit status. So was Mithya, first considered as a niche multiplex comedy, the film has not created an earthquake, but it has certainly managed to outlast the period that was initially predicted for it in theaters. A top 5 spot in its fifth week speaks a lot about the caliber of the movie. The first quarter of 2008 was generously sprinkled with slow turtles that turned out to be winners, so what’s up in the second quarter.