"Soggade Chinni Nayana" and "Express Raja" have become big Sankranti hits at the box office, while "Nannaku Prematho" and "Dictator" are yet to recover the investments of their distributors.
This Sankranti witnessed big ticket Tollywood releases like "Nannaku Prematho", "Dictator", "Soggade Chinni Nayana" and "Express Raja". Of the four films, the Junior NTR-starrer was the most hyped and highly promoted movie, while the Nagarjuna-starrer lacked publicity when compared to others. Some people in the industry were sceptic about success of any of the films.
"Nannaku Prematho" was released in 1800+ theatres on 13 January and opened to an overwhelming response. With its superb first day collection, the movie became the third all time biggest opener. But despite getting positive talks, the film failed to show growth in its business on its second day. Its collection was affected by "Dictator" and "Express Raja", which hit the screens on 14 January.
"Dictator" and "Express Raja" received decent opening and did good collection at the box office on the first day. However, their business was slowed down by "Soggade Chinni Nayana", which hit the marquee on 15 January. The Nagarjuna-starrer opened to good response and the word of mouth helped it maintain rock-steady over the weekend, while other films showed drop in their collections.
On weekdays, all the four movies showed considerable amount of dip in their business, but "Soggade Chinni Nayana" had better response than others. The Nagarjuna-starrer has grossed Rs 34.74 crore at the global box office in its first week. In seven days, the film has earned Rs 22.83 crore for its distributors, who have invested Rs 18.50 crore on its theatrical rights.
"Soggade Chinni Nayana" was released in a limited number of screens in its opening week, but the makers increased its screen count after seeing the huge demand for the film everywhere. The film has already become the first super-hit film of the year and it is expected to do well in its second week as well.
"Nannaku Prematho" has raked in approximately Rs 69.50 crore at the worldwide box office in its first week. It has become the highest grosser of this Sankranti in just nine days. The distributors have shelled out Rs 54 crore on its theatrical rights. The movie has returned 44.86 crore to them and it is likely to recover the remaining amount besides earning benefit to them in its second week.
Balakrishna's "Dictator" has grossed approximately Rs 26.40 crore at the worldwide box office in the eight-day extended first week. Its distributors' share stands at Rs 17.45 crore. Its theatrical rights have been sold for a whopping price of Rs 27 crore and the movie has a tough task of recovering the investment of Rs 10 crore. The film is not likely to fetch its total investments.
"Express Raja" has been made with a small budget of Rs seven crore and its producers have distributed the movie in most of the regions of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The film has collected Rs 12.43 crore gross at the worldwide box office in its opening week. It has earned a share of Rs 6.87 crore for its distributors in eight days.
The Sharwanand-starrer was not released in other parts of India due to unavailability of cinema halls in the first week. The makers have managed to release it there in its second week. "Express Raja" is expected to do well in the second week too. Its earnings in this week will be profit for the distributors.
"Nannaku Prematho", "Soggade Chinni Nayana" "Dictator" and "Express Raja" have collected Rs 143.07 crore together at the worldwide box office in their opening week. They have fetched Rs 92.01 crore to their distributors. This is the highest business for Tollywood done during Sankranti festival.