Rohit Shetty's film "Chennai Express", starring Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone, has collected over ₹225 at the domestic box office, making it the biggest grosser of all time in Indian cinema.
The action-comedy entertainer has broken many records, becoming the biggest opener ever in Bollywood with ₹33.12 crore and fastest film to cross ₹100-crore mark and ₹200-crore mark. Its second day collection of ₹28.05 crore was the highest and went on to become the highest grosser in India by earning ₹225 crore, beating "3 Idiots" collection of ₹202.67 crore. It was reported that the film has surpassed the worldwide record held by Aamir Khan's film.
It may be worth mentioning the factors that helped the figures to swell up.
Shah Rukh Khan
He is more like a brand, as anything associated with his name will sell. Some of his previous films were slammed by critics, but still performed well at the box office, proving the point that his films will do well irrespective of the content. His pairing with Deepika Padukone, the heroine in "Om Shanti Om", also created curiosity among film lovers.
Eid Holiday and Marketing Strategy
Big festivals like Eid, Diwali and Christmas are usually reserved for films starring big names like Aamir, Salman, Shah Rukh, Akshay Kumar and others. Cashing in on the festive season is a tried and tested strategy. "Chennai Express" reaped maximum collections due to Eid and Independence Day celebrations. The makers had started promoting the film long before it was released, which greatly helped its business on the opening day.
Number of Screens and Ticket Price
Big stars enjoy many advantages, and one of them is screen count. "Chennai Express", which was released in over 3,500 screens in India, earned over ₹225, whereas "3 Idiots" earned ₹202.67 crore from a little more than 1,000 screens. Moreover, the price of cinema tickets keeps increasing, so it is unfair to compare the revenue of films.
Releasing a small-budget film alongside a another big-starrer release face the risk of being overshadowed. As expected, "Chennai Express" had a solo release on 9 August, after "Once Upon A Time in Mumbai Dobaara" (OUATIMD), which was supposed to release during the festive season, made way for the Shah Rukh starrer. Interestingly, "Chennai Express" affected the collections of "OUATIMD" and other films which were released at a later date.