Ashutosh Gowariker’s highly-anticipated war drama Panipat was released on Friday, 6th December. The historical film -- which stars Arjun Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt and Kriti Sanon in the lead roles -- started off with collections much lower than expected, earning between INR 3.75-4.12 crore on the first day. As per a report by Box Office India, the film showed some growth on Saturday but managed to earn only around INR 5.75-6 crore on the second day. The report said that the film did not perform well in the North and East India markets, which were important for Panipat as the film celebrates the Maratha empire.
Still from Panipat
Commenting on the film’s opening day earnings, film trade analyst Taran Adarsh tweeted, “#Panipat records low numbers on Day 1... Reports [word of mouth] are positive and its biz, hopefully, should see a turnaround on Day 2 and 3... Fri ₹ 4.12 cr [2395 screens]. #India biz... Showcasing at multiplexes affected due to excessive run time [close to 3 hours].”
The film -- based on the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761, an important even in India’s history -- also stars Mohnish Bahl, Padmini Kohlapure, Zeenat Aman and several other well-known actors in vital roles. It has received a mixed response from critics as well as the audience. Made on a big budget of INR 100 crore, Panipat has been appreciated for its costume design, production design and war scenes. However, the film’s run-time, plot, special effects and performances have received some criticism. One reviewer, Sreeparna Sengupta of Times of India, wrote that the love story between Maratha warrior Shadashivrao Bha (portrayed by Arjun) and Parvati Bai (portrayed by Kriti) was “one of the high points” of the film but “with a run-time of close to three hours and the many characters and plot points the film touches upon it becomes a lengthy and at times, tedious watch.”