In a stirring testament to the enduring allure of Bollywood in Nepal, the simultaneous release of two Bollywood films, 'Animal' and 'SamBahadur', has set the country's box office abuzz. The Nepali movie 'Dimag Kharab', in its fourth week, also continues to draw audiences. Among the new releases, 'Animal', headlined by Ranbir Kapoor, has emerged as a powerhouse, with all shows sold out for the weekend in major multiplexes and a 95% occupancy rate reported across theaters since Friday morning. The film's weekend opening is projected to rival the recent Shah Rukh Khan starrer 'Jawan.'
A Roaring Start for 'Animal'
The grand opening of 'Animal' is poised to record one of the highest earnings in the Nepali box office recently. The estimated Friday collection alone is over one and a half crores Nepalese Rupees, with potential growth on Saturday. By the end of the two-day run, the gross earnings are expected to hover around three crores Nepalese Rupees. Directed by Sandeep Reddy Vanga, the film explores the intricacies of a father-son relationship marred by 'love and hatred', an emotional whirlwind punctuated by adrenaline-fueled action sequences. The film also features Anil Kapoor, Rashmika Mandanna, and Bobby Deol in pivotal roles. However, its adult certification and competition from other films might pose challenges to its opening momentum.
'SamBahadur' - A Tribute to a War Hero
In contrast to 'Animal', 'SamBahadur', directed by Meghna Gulzar and starring Vicky Kaushal in the lead role, offers a biographical glimpse into the life of Sam Manekshaw, the Indian Army Chief during the 1971 India-Pakistan war. His leadership of the Gorkha Regiment forms the crux of the narrative. The film, peppered with significant Nepali dialogues, has received positive reviews, which could boost its performance despite a weak opening day. The film also stars Sanya Malhotra and Fatima Sana Shaikh in notable roles.
Continuing Legacy of Bollywood in Nepal
Bollywood's popularity in Nepal is not a recent phenomenon. Udit Narayan's debut in the Nepalese movie titled Kusume Rumal (Silk Handkerchief) established a lasting bond between the two film industries. The film held the record for being the highest-grossing Nepalese movie until 2001. Moreover, the journey of Shah Rukh Khan's fans from Nepal to India to watch Dunki reaffirms this enduring connection.