The Villain first song release
Arjun Janya has composed the music for Sudeep and Shivaraj Kumar's The Villain.PR Handout

Prem's ambitious The Villain has met with mixed reviews and a section of netizens might have consistently trolled the movie, but it has not impacted the film's business to much extent. As a result, the Sudeep and Shivaraj Kumar-starrer has set the box office on fire.

The Villain has come under criticism from a section of audience, who are not happy with Prem's screenplay as they claim that it fails to hold the viewers' attention. Indeed, a section of Shivanna fans are also not happy with the content because they felt the movie has given more importance to Sudeep than their favourite star.

These factors were expected to take a toll on the film's business, but the collection continues to be strong. Interestingly, it is the family audience who are watching the movie in big numbers.

"I liked the movie. I felt story is good and the last hour is very engaging," Pramila, a 55-year old viewer who watched the film at Kamakya, told International Business Times, India. Like her, many other family audience are impressed with the film.

"We cannot call it as a great movie, but it is a complete entertainer. I liked Shivaraj Kumar's matured performance and Sudeep's acting in the climax though I did not find any necessary of Saranya Ponvannan in the film. Umashri or any other Kannada actress could have done a better job," Sathyanarayana, a viewer said.

The exhibitors are also happy with the movie's performance. "Generally, footfalls will drastrically drop if the movie recieves mixed reviews these days, but it is not true in case of The Villain. If morning and matinee shows are filled by mass and youths, family audience are turning up for evening shows," a representative from a single screen in South Bengaluru said.  

The movie, which is released in over 450 screens in the state, has grossed over Rs 35 crore and expected to earn around Rs 40 crore in its extended first week. The film has collected over Rs 60 lakh outside Karnataka.