Akhanda, the Telugu action-drama film starring Nandamuri Balakrishna, has collected approximately Rs 15.35-15.40 crore (gross) in the Telugu states on its first day, Anupam Reddy, executive committee member of the Telangana State Film Chamber of Commerce, told Silverscreen India.
“About Rs 6 crore was collected in Telangana and the rest in Andhra Pradesh. Worldwide, it should be around Rs 29 crore,” said Reddy.
He further added that Akhanda, which released in theatres on Thursday, has seen the best opening-day collections in the career of Balakrishna, who has appeared in over 100 films.
Written and directed by filmmaker Boyapati Srinu, Akhanda also stars Pragya Jaiswal, Jagapathi Babu, Srikanth, and Poorna, among others. It has music by S Thaman.
Reddy, who is also the owner of Hyderabad’s Sudha Theatres, said there was about 70-80% occupancy recorded in theatres across the Telugu states. He mentioned that most of the audience was comprised of Balakrishna’s fans.
“The success of Akhanda strongly suggests that a positive trend can be expected with upcoming big films like RRR and Pushpa,” he added.
It is to be noted that Akhanda is the first of the big star-studded Telugu films to release this holiday season. While Pushpa and Shyam Singha Roy will be out in December, Bheemla Nayak, RRR, and Radhe Shyam are expected to hit the big screens in January.
Akshita Reddy, who runs the Ranga 70mm single-screen theatre in Hyderabad, said her premises too witnessed fans of Balakrishna thronging to watch Akhanda. “The response is great and collections were pretty good as compared to the last three months. The morning shows were filled with fans, and we ran housefull night shows as well,” she said.
“With concerns about the new Covid-19 variant, we were quite apprehensive about the future of the business, but Akhanda’s reception has given us more confidence,” she added.
Balgovind Raj Tadla, secretary of Greater Telangana Exhibitors Association and partner at Sudharshan 35mm and Devi 70mm single-screen theatres in Hyderabad, said, “On Thursday, we recorded 100% occupancy for some shows and about 80% on average. The theatres were filled up and overflowing on Friday too. It is a welcome sight.”
“We are now hopeful that the prolonged depression in the theatre business due to the pandemic will be shaken off,” added Tadla.