Shah Rukh Khan's most ambitious sci-fi thriller hit the screens on Diwali and while some critics gave it a thumbs up for blending elegance of Hollywood with Indian sensibilities, others panned the superhero drama by labelling it just as a video game. The reviews notwithstanding, it has managed to collect Rs.18 crore at the home box office on the opening day.
Arjun Rampal in RA.One
However, as predicted by trade pundits, the film couldn't break the first day collection records of Salman Khan starrer "Bodyguard", which earned Rs.22 crore in the domestic market on the opening day.
In the onverseas market, the Red Chillies Entertainment and Eros International co-production raked in Rs.6.5 crore.
In pictures: 'RA.One' UK premiere
If reviewers have a different take on the film, viewers are also reacting differently but theatre owners predict good business in the coming week.
"Although the film has got mixed reviews, the first day has been really good. We witnessed more than 80 percent occupancy," a source in PVR told IANS.
"Moreover, the extensive marketing of the film has created a curiosity among people, who are eager to see what is the film all about," the source added.
Cinemax witnessed an average footfall on the first day.
"There could be two reasons - the 3D version of the film was made available a little late. Although in metros it was fine, but in other cities due to delayed release in 3D we had to cancel some of the shows," said Sunil Punjab, CEO of Cinemax.
"Also, we saw a decline in the occupancy in the evening as it was Diwali time and people were busy in Diwali puja. But today (Thursday) the response has been encouraging since morning we have had good number of people coming to see the film," he added.
Directed by Anubhav Sinha, the Rs.150 crore film, which also stars Kareena Kapoor and Arjun Rampal in prominent roles, was released in as many as 3,500 screens across the world.
Even before the film reached the theatres, its makers earned money by selling its satellite rights reportedly for for Rs.35 crore and the distribution rights for Rs.77 crore.
The film's highlight is high-tech VFX shots, which were outsourced from multiple specialty studios in London, Paris and Bangkok, as also the US.
Puneet Sahay of Spice Cinemas, however, informed that the film is not appealing to adults.
"Although Shah Rukh's acting is good, 'RA.One' is basically a film for children as it boast of lot of animation and special effects. Adults are not actually liking the film. However, it is likely to do well in the coming days," Sahay said.
"Actually, it's nothing more than a video game," said college student Akhil Sharma.