Ponniyin Selvan: I, Mani Ratnam's historical epic, has registered very strong advance booking trends, with many shows in cities like Chennai and Pondicherry sold out for almost the whole weekend.
Mani Ratnam’s magnum opus Ponniyin Selvan: I is almost ready for release in theatres. The film hits the screen on September 30, Friday. The advance booking of tickets has been on all week now and the numbers are really encouraging. The film is on course to register the best first-day advance booking for any Tamil film this year, challenging the impressive number set by Kamal Haasan’s Vikram earlier this year. Additionally, in many cities down south, almost all shows have been booked for the entire weekend, showing the immense craze for the film.
As per trade sources, by Thursday morning, the Tamil version of the film had sold tickets for opening day worth ₹10 crore gross alone. In addition, the Telugu, Hindi, and Malayalam-dubbed versions contributed to advance booking sales of over ₹1 crore, giving the film a total advance booking sale for the first day at over ₹11 crore. Kamal Haasan’s Vikram had seen advance booking sales of ₹15.30 crore for the first day when it released in June. With almost the entire Thursday left for PS1, the film may surpass this figure.
While Ponniyin Selvan is being touted as a pan-India film, the bulk of the collections so far are from Tamil Nadu. In fact, of the total advance booking collections, only 4% are from outside Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh. The Hindi-dubbed version has contributed an underwhelming ₹18-20 lakh so far. However, the case with Vikram was quite similar as it generated ₹27 lakh in advance booking from its Hindi version. But in Tamil-speaking regions, the film is popular. Shows in many cities like Pondicherry and Trichy are sold out not just for the opening day but for the whole weekend. Even many theatres in Chennai have reported houseful shows already. Smaller centres are expected to pick up post-release.
But what is truly in Ponniyin Selvan’s favour is the immense response overseas, particularly in the US. At the US box office, the film has already raked in $835,000 ( ₹6.8 crore) and is all set for a million-dollar final advance booking figure from the North American market alone. As per industry insiders, the total advance booking figures of Ponniyin Selvan globally are already within touching distance of ₹20 crore and may even reach ₹25 crore by the end of the day. This pretty much means the film is set for grand opening day, which could be over ₹50 crore globally going by current estimates.
Ponniyin Selvan I, based on Kalki Krishnamurthy’s novel of the same name, is a historical epic set in the Chola era. The film is a fictionalised account of the early days of the great Chola emperor Rajaraja I, and stars Vikram, Jayam Ravi, Karthi, Aishwarya Rai, and Trisha Krishnan.