The release of "Satyagraha" has affected John Abraham's "Madras Café" which is now witnessing a significant drop in collections.
"Madras Café" had a slow start on the first day of its release, but it picked up pace over its debut weekend. The film sustained its business in the first week, but dropped on its second Friday (30 August), due to "Satyagraha" release.
"Madras Café" collected just ₹1.20 crore on Friday, but managed to pick up and earn approximately ₹6.90 crore to ₹7.20 crore nett in its second weekend. Its domestic box office collections are pegged at around ₹41 crore.
"#MadrasCafe collected approx Rs 6.90 cr to 7.20 cr nett in Weekend 2. Breakup: Fri 1.20 cr, Sat 2.20 to 2.50 cr, Sun 3.50 cr.... Grand total: approx Rs 40.71 cr to 41.01 nett," film critic and trade analyst Sreedhar Pillai tweeted.
Amitabh Bachchan-Ajay Devgn starrer "Satyagraha" grossed better collections than "Madras Café". The film raked in ₹39.12 crore nett in its opening weekend at the domestic box office, whereas "Madras Café" fetched just around ₹20.42 crore to ₹20.67 crore.
The slow pace in its business is attributed to the intellectual content of the film which appeals to only a select audience, trade analyst Amod Mehra told Hindustan Times. "Madras Café" is based on Sri Lankan civil war and the assassination of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. It has received rave reviews from critics as well as film buffs.
John, who is one of the producers of the film, and director Shoojit Sircar are elated over the response for the film. However, Shoojit feels that Indian cinema is not ready for the political genre.
Sircar told the Press Trust of India, "It is very difficult to make films like Madras Cafe in India, given the diverse nature of the country. We are going there slowly but it will take some time before we start accepting such stories. I feel fortunate that my film is one of the firsts."
It may be recalled that "Madras Café" faced protests in Tamil Nadu as some Tamil groups claimed that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has been portrayed in poor light. The film did not release in the state and was pulled from some theatres in overseas countries including UK and Canada.