Rajinikanth, Akshay Kumar's 2.0 nets Rs 80 crore for theatrical rights; pre-release business at Rs 200 crore
When Rajinikanth's highly-anticipated Kabali was on the verge of releasing in 2016, there were reports about the spectacular pre-release business it had already done. With the sales of various rights and brand deals, Kabali mustered up around Rs 225 crore even before it reached the theatres. And while there are conflicting reports about how much money it made in total at the box office, the figures settled somewhere around the Rs 450-490 crore mark.
Naturally, there is a lot of speculation over what Rajinikanth's next film — 2.0, the sequel to the super-successful Enthiran/Robot (2010) — will be able to achieve.
Before the Mohanlal-starrer Randamoozham (aka The Mahabharata) was announced, with a budget of Rs 1,000 crore, 2.0 was reported to be among India's most expensive films, costing around Rs 400 crore to make.
However, with Lyca Productions (2.0's producers) striking a record deal with the Zee group for the satellite rights to the film — estimated to be Rs 110 crore — the film was already on track to recover some of its investment.
It now emerges that the Hindi theatrical rights of 2.0 have been sold for Rs 80 crore, bringing the film's pre-release business to Kabali levels, a whole year before its release.
DNA reported that the producers had wanted Rs 100 crore for the theatrical rights of 2.0. but this was felt to be too high a figure. Finally, Rs 80 crore was settled on, as the exhibitors felt Akshay Kumar's pan-India reach would assure them a good return on investment.
2.0 has been in the news ever since it was announced, and recently, actress Amy Jackson's photos from the set were leaked much to the makers' dismay.
It now remains to be seen whether or not 2.0 will be able to match Baahubali 2: The Conclusion's box office performance.