From 5 am shows to box-office gold: How has 'Tamizh Padam 2' fared?

KollywoodThis spoof film, which does not have big names in the star cast, has had a great reception from the audience.Anjana ShekarIt is not often that a film outside the realm of superstars like Rajini, Kamal, Vijay, Ajith, Suriya, or Vikram gets an astounding opening but for Cs Amudhan’s Tamizh Padam 2 the response has been great since the word go. With multiple posters and promos leading up to its release, Tamizh Padam 2 was off to a good start, creating a pre-release craze among moviegoers. Starring Shiva and Iswarya Menon in lead roles, Tamizh Padam 2, which released on July 12, had its first show at 5.00 am in certain theatres in the city, a privilege usually reserved for the bigger stars. In addition to it, a few theatre owners also increased the number of shows on the first day following a good response. According to film writer Sreedhar Pillai, Tamizh Padam 2 released in over 350 theatres in the state, an enviable accomplishment for a film of its stature. A reliable source from the crew told Tnm that the film released in around 75 screens outside the south in India. What explains the hype? In recent times, many star-driven films like Bairavaa, Vivegam, Singam 3, etc. have had a lukewarm reception at the box office. Therefore, does Tamizh Padam 2, a spoof that takes a dig at star vehicles, getting such a huge response indicate a change in the mindset of people? “I would attribute it to the online campaign and the number of promos that the makers of this film did before its release. The campaign has worked well with the youth - their target audience. While Kadai Kutty Singam has targeted family audiences, Tamizh Padam 2 has focused on the youth. This equation has worked to the benefit of both the films,” says Sreedhar Pillai. Kadai Kutty Singam, starring Karthi and Sayyessha in the lead roles, released a day after Tamizh Padam 2. Talking about the film’s pre-release hype, a representative from Rohini Silver Screens in Chennai says, “The film had a good buzz even before its release, so we decided to open a 5.00 am show on its first day. Seeing a good response, we increased the number of shows on day one to 13. Almost all shows on the first three days were houseful.” The film’s solo release on a Thursday has also worked to its advantage, says Kaushik Lm, box office tracker. “Also the film’s prequel, Tamizh Padam, was well-received. All those who saw this film in 2010 were eager to catch up with its sequel. Additionally, the makers made sure their promos created interest among the present generation. They had their social media game on point,” says Kaushik. Kaushik goes on to add that while others spend heavily on social media campaigns, the makers of Tamizh Padam 2 seem to have perfected this game. “Their teaser, video song, posters were all unique and very well received and this is one of the most important reasons for the film doing so well.” Dodging bullets While Tamil cinema is well-known for its fan frenzy, how did a spoof film that parodies all the other popular stars’ movies gain the kind of acceptance that it has today? Actor Shiva in his interview to Tnm mentioned that nowhere else will the audience be so welcoming of a spoof film. “I’m not sure if the film would have had the same kind of reception if it were to release in Bombay,” he said. Does this perhaps indicate a change in the audience? That people are bored of watching mass, commercial films? “The reason could be because it is a spoof film. The genre itself is new and we haven't had a spoof in eight years. This is also a reason why it did well. Had there been four spoof films already, it might not have worked to this effect. Even if the makers of TP2 were to make one next year, I'm not sure how well it would be received,” says Kaushik. Sreedhar Pillai concurs and says that it is the uniqueness of the genre which has made it such a big hit among the audience. "I don't think this indicates a change in the mindset. It's all entertainment for the audience," he says. While many have been largely appreciative of the film, there have been a few fans who've objected to the film taking a jibe at their favourite stars. However, they are in a minority. The numbers game According to Kaushik, the film’s first day collections in Tamil Nadu is Rs 4.5 crores, which is a great number for a film that isn't star driven. The Tn collections for films which have top male actors is usually between 15 to 20 crores on the first day. However, the budget of these films is also likely to be much higher than Tamizh Padam 2. “In Chennai alone, the first-day collection of Tamizh Padam 2 has amounted to Rs 63 lakhs,” Kaushik says. The number doing the rounds for the first four days is a whopping Rs 12 to 13 crores in the state. Tamizh Padam 2, a sequel to Tamizh Padam that released in 2010, has a cult following in the state, thanks to the ingeniousness of the makers. The sequel, directed by Cs Amudhan, takes potshots at all the popular cop films and does not spare Tn politics either. Also Read: Cs Amudhan's 'Tamizh Padam 2' speaks the truth about female characters in Kollywood
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