Riteish Deshmukh’s Marathi debut Lai Bhaari has become the first-ever Marathi film to earn Rs.10.15 crore in just three days of its release, setting an unprecedented record. On the opening day, July 11, it garnered Rs.3.1 crore. Trade analyst Taran Adarsh posted on a micro blogging website, “#LaiBhaari [Marathi] has a MIND-BOGGLING weekend. Fri Rs 3.10 cr, Sat Rs 3.60 cr, Sun Rs 3.85 cr. Total: Rs 10.55 cr. Note: Maharashtra biz only.”(Sic.) while trade Analyst Komal Nahata tweeted, “#LaiBhaari has the most weighty first day in Mararhi cinema history. Rs 3.1 crore. Fantabulous!!”
According to director Nishikant Kamat, it is a dream opening. “As per Hindi films, it is like a 50 crore opening. But these are figures one can only dream of. I was shocked myself but it makes me happy,” he says adding that Maharashtra is a very strong territory as the audience is hungry for good Marathi films. “And that is happening. It is welcome sign. But now we have to work harder.”
For Kamat, this is his second Marathi film, the first being Dombivli Fast which went on to win several awards including the National Award and Lai Bhaari, his second Marathi film, is already winning accolades.
On Wednesday, the sixth day of its release, Lai Bhaari which came with Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania had collected Rs 16 crore, highest ever for a Marathi film, against Humpty…’s Rs 47 cr. Lai Bhaari is Riteish Deshmukh’s debut in Marathi films, to which Kamat says, “There was not an iota of doubt that Riteish would be accepted in Marathi. He has a good fan following.” Deshmukh, who is having a good sabbatical as a producer where Marathi films are concerned with Balak Palak and Yellow, has also produced Lai Bhaari. In fact, even in Hindi, he had Humshakal and Ek Villain to his credit.
“It is also destiny. The success of Ek Villain has helped our film. It is a matter of luck that Ek Villain released two weeks earlier and then Pandharpur pilgrimage happened during the same period. It all snowballed into an effect which we had not anticipated. I would say, every film comes with a fate,” says the director.
Earlier Sanjay Jadhav’s Duniyadari which was made at a budget of Rs 4 crore had collected over Rs 22 crore in six weeks, thereby breaking all records at that time. Nanubhai Jaisinghani, presenter of Duniyadari, in an earlier interview had said, “Duniyadari is the highest-grosser ever in Marathi cinema, having crossed Rs 22 crore. Till date it was Mahesh Manjrekar’s Mee Shivajiraje Bhosale Boltoy that was considered the highest-grosser as it had earned Rs 21 crore when it released five years back,” he says
In fact, this year has been good for the Marathi film industry with Duniyadari, Timepass and Fandry, doing very well at the box- office. Films like Pyar Vali Love Story, Rege, Por Bazar, Shutter, to name a few, will come with a lot of promise and it remains to be seen if any of these films will break the record created by Lai Bhaari.