‘Thalaivaa’ to face competition from ‘Chennai Express’?

Eid (Ramzan) is one of the biggest festivals for Bollywood and Malayalam films. There is always a tremendous hype around an Eid biggie and ensures a huge opening.

This year Shah Rukh Khan's Rohit Shetty directed Chennai Express is slated for release (August 8) for the big Eid weekend (Aug 8 to 11).

Around the same time Ilayathalapathy Vijay's Thalaivaa directed by Vijay is scheduled to release worldwide. Sri Mishri Productions the producers of the film distributed in Tamil Nadu through Vendhar Films are trying for an August 9 release.

It looks like there will be a clash between SRK's Chennai Express and Vijay's Thalaivaa in key international markets and Kerala/Karnataka (KK). SRK's film is releasing in 3500 plus screens and UTV is aggressively marketing it.

The overseas and KK distributors of Thalaivaa, do not want it to clash with Chennai Express. In Kerala Vijay's regular distributor Thameen Films Shibu is finding it difficult to get screens, mainly in Malabar area as there are four big Malayalam films releasing for Ramzan. Vijay is bigger in Kerala but SRK is also huge especially in Malabar area. UTV has already booked 60 screens in Kerala.

The overseas distributors are asking producer Chandraprakash Jain to push Thalaivaa from August 9 to 23, to get wider overseas release. Remember Ilayathalapathy's overseas market is increasing with every new release. 15% of total revenue of a Vijay Tamil film comes from outside of Tamil Nadu market, and the star is keen to increase it.

For a Tamil superstar like Vijay with phenomenal reach worldwide, he has to take the overseas and KK sentiments into consideration. The trade feels a big hero Tamil film always collects better if it gets a solo release in the international market. It means not clashing with a Bollywood or Tollywood biggie.


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