NEW DELHI (TIP): “Vishwaroop”, the Hindi version ofactor-director Kamal Haasan’s controversial film”Vishwaroopam”, released peacefully on February 1 toan average response, which was likely to pick up overthe weekend.The movie, the original Tamil and Telugu version ofwhich is currently banned in Tamil Nadu, releasedwithout any hassles in Delhi, Punjab and Rajasthan,while in Uttar Pradesh and Mumbai, security wasbeefed up at cinema halls for the release over fear ofprotests.
“Vishwaroopam” is under the scanner of 24 Muslimorganisations, which objected to certain scenes of thefilm as derogatory to their community.However, the situation seems to have sparkedincreased interest in the movie in north India.In Delhi, the response was okay, but the collectionsare expected to increase during the weekend, says AnantVerma, director and business head, DT Cinemas.”Whoever has seen the movie has liked it – be it peoplefrom south India or north India.
The publicity that themovie has got is working in favour of the movie. We areexpecting a hike (in collections) over the weekend,”Verma said. He says no security issues have beenreported at any of his halls here so far, and “everythingis under control”.”The occupancy for the first show was around 55 to 60per cent, but that is how it is every (early) Friday. Thefilms start picking up from Friday evening,” he added.Delhi-based distributor Joginder Mahajan admits thestart for “Vishwaroop” is “poor”, but “it is expected togrow over the weekend”.He pointed out how “since there has been so muchcontroversy, people avoid going on the first day”.
In east Punjab, the film’s opening was below average,informed distributor Jaspal Dhingra of NanaksarEnterprises. “The response to the first show was belowaverage. The film may be good, but collections are veryaverage. Generally, dubbed films from south India don’tdo well in Punjab. There are very few people here whowant to watch the movie,” Dhingra said.”As far as security is concerned, there were no issueshere and I don’t think there will be any problems in thefuture too,” he said.
In Jaipur, the film got a peaceful opening and therewere are no protests, said police officials.Meanwhile, Kamal Haasan and his brother ChandraHaasan are trying to reach a solution to end the ban on”Vishwaroopam” in Tamil Nadu, which has led to theirincurring losses of Rs.30-60 crore.
Sporadic Protests In Lucknow
Sporadic demonstrations were held in Old Lucknowarea demanding a ban on Kamal Haasan’s movie“Vishwaroopam” that was released in the state amidtight security on February 1. After running into troublein several states in South India, Haasan received majorrelief in Uttar Pradesh when Chief Minister AkhileshYadav decided to let the film be screened in the state.