With a day to go before the teaser of the long-delayed 2.0 is released, Rajnikanth's fans are gearing up for the visual spectacle that director Shankar has on offer. The sci-fi film, also featuring Akshay Kumar as the antagonist, is touted to be India's most expensive film to date with a reported budget of Rs 545 crore. Contrary to assumptions that it would be difficult to break even considering the film's mammoth budget, trade experts claim that 2.0 is likely to dethrone Baahubali: The Conclusion to become the highest grosser in Indian cinema.
A still from Baahubali 2
Trade expert Amod Mehra points out that the producers are aiming to release the trilingual [Hindi, Tamil and Telugu] across over 6,000 screens, thus paving the way for a strong opening. "2.0 will see the widest release across the nation. I won't be surprised if it rakes in Rs 50 crore-plus on day one across languages. The movie is likely to surpass Baahubali's lifetime collections." The Prabhas starrer had raked in Rs 1400 crore in the domestic market.
A poster of 2.0
What also works to the film's advantage is the megastar's strong fan base across countries. "Rajnikanth has a huge fan following in Malaysia, Japan and the US. So one can expect a huge boost in its overseas collections," adds Mehra. Couple that with Kumar's fan following among the Indian diaspora in the UAE, and the producers find themselves tapping into a new audience base. "Akshay Kumar has fans across Canada and the UAE. These pockets have remained largely untapped by the South filmmakers."
By hitting screens on November 29, the film may not enjoy the benefit of a holiday release. However, trade-smith Girish Wankhede says it won't impact 2.0 in any way. "We always complain that we aren't able to make a film on par with Hollywood. I am glad someone has taken the risk. I am sure the filmmakers will reap the benefits."
How much do Rajni's films cost?
Rs 130 cr Lingaa (2014)
Rs 100 cr Kabali (2016)
Rs 140 cr Kaala (2018)
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