Ranbir Kapoor’s first film in four years, the big-budget masala entertainer Shamshera, is underperforming at the box office. The film has opened to around Rs 10.25 crore on the first day of release, which is not a great figure for something mounted on a reported budget of Rs 150 crore. In fact, Shamshera could actually open to a lower number than YRF’s other notorious box office bomb of 2022, Samrat Prithviraj which earned Rs 10.7 crore on its opening day.
Trade analyst Taran Adarsh noted that Shamshera’s opening day collections are the fifth-highest of any Bollywood film the year. But it trails flops such as Bachchhan Paandey and Samrat Prithviraj, and even Gangubai Kathiawadi, which starred Ranbir’s wife Alia Bhatt in the lead role.
According to Box Office India, the film has notably underperformed in Mumbai, and the mass markets haven’t fared better either. Shamshera is the second-widest release of the post-pandemic era, and is playing in over 4000 theatres, which means that occupancy on day one has been very low. The film has a tough road ahead, which combined with the less-than-positive reviews should make it more difficult for it to finish with a healthy total.
Film trade analyst Komal Nahta tweeted that certain shows of the film had to be cancelled because of low turnout. “Dull Shamshera opening plunges the already nervous Hindi film trade into a further state of panic! Unfortunately, collections of the big film are small!” he wrote. He added, “Another big film… but the same story continues! Shows of Shamshera in the morning and noon/afternoon at some cinemas cancelled due to absence of audience.”
This is looking like YRF’s third flop of the year, after Samrat Prithviraj and Jayeshbhai Jordaar. The studio’s last hit was 2019’s War, and it will hope to return to that form with January 2023’s much-anticipated Pathaan.
Shamshera’s potential box office disappointment would also be a worrying sign for Ranbir’s second film of the year, the even bigger Brahmastra. In the making for nearly a decade, the film marks his first on-screen partnership with wife Alia Bhatt. Directed by Ayan Mukerji and co-produced by Karan Johar, the fantasy epic has been produced on a reported budget of Rs 300 crore.