R Madhavan’s Rocket: The Nambi Effect is released across India in different languages including Hindi, Tamil, English, Telugu and Kannada. The film is based on the life of former Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) rocket scientist Nambi Narayanan. Along with that, moviegoers also have the actioner Om The Battle Within hitting theaters this week. The two films, belonging to different genres, will address different audiences. Movie trade experts suggest that Rocketry will grow at the box office based on its word-of-mouth, Om will see more attendance in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.
Film producer and business analyst, Girish Johar believes that the Madhavan film “leans towards a niche audience” and is not a “hardcore commercial film”. According to him, the film is a little high-end and targets multiplex audiences.
“The buzz is quite good and positive, especially in the south. Rocketry is going to get off to a good start at the box office. The film has also received numerous accolades from the international scene, which seems positive. For the Hindi belt, it will rely more on word of mouth and it should be decent to start with,” Johar told indianexpress.com, while adding that Rocketry should do something around a crore on its opening day. “I watch his collection from the weekend and his life at the box office, instead of the first day collection, because I know the movie is more word of mouth based,” he added.
R Madhavan plays the lead role in Rocketry. He also wrote and directed the film. Nambi Narayanan, head of ISRO’s cryogenics division, was falsely accused of espionage and arrested in 1994. All charges against him were dismissed by the Supreme Court in 1998.
While Girish Johar thinks Rocketry will only find an audience in the urban market, film exhibitor Akshaye Rathi, who has watched the film, suggests, “It’s not a film that is intellectually inaccessible to people. It’s a movie about a rocket scientist, not a rocket science lesson. It is said in a way that the common of the most common people can understand.
According to Rathi, the film will find success nationwide, but its box office collection depends entirely on “how quickly word of mouth spreads.” He said, “No doubt that this is not a movie that will open to large numbers on day one, it’s more of a word of mouth movie.” He also compared Rocketry to The Kashmir Files, which surprised not only trade pundits but also the film’s producers who didn’t expect it to do so well at the box office. “Even The Kashmir Files wasn’t an artist either, but it was on an extremely relevant issue for us. That’s what made it work. After watching Rocketry, I can say that’s the “one of the most important films in the Indian film industry. As a director and actor, R Madhavan was phenomenal in this film,” Rathi shared.
For those looking for hardcore Bollywood entertainment, they have Om directed by Aditya Roy Kapur. The action drama also stars Sanjana Sanghi, Jackie Shroff, Ashutosh Rana, and Prachi Shah.
Pegging the film’s opening day collection at around Ts 1.5-2 crore, Girish Johar said, “It’s a typical hardcore action movie. The trailer is okay. Fans of Aditya Roy Kapur will be able to see him as a typical Hindi hero. The excitement level is only decent. I think the movie is a change of gears for Aditya Roy Kapur, so far he’s done mostly romantic movies, and it’s a hardcore action movie. This time he tried to explore a different area.
Om and Rocketry will be released on nearly 1800 to 2000 screens.