OSO and Saawariya neck-to-neck

MUMBAI: As the race to the finish hots up, the advance booking figures of the two Diwali releases look promising.  Multiplex owners are gung-ho about the opening day collections. After all the long drawn out negotiations have resulted in a win-win situation for both the distributors and the multiplexes.

As Saawariya has had a head-start by having opened bookings on Sunday, it will take a lead on the first few days. But insiders say that Om Shanti Om will definitely catch up.

Devang Sampat Marketing VP Cinemax is excited with the Saawariya collections so far. "We opened bookings on Sunday and all are properties have registered 50 per cent bookings. As for Om Shanti Om the bookings began only this morning and people have already started coming in. In fact both the films are showing very good on-line bookings."

Telephonic as well on-line bookings for both the films are also picking up.

What could be really interesting to watch is how the box office fares in the second and third week as by then the hype surrounding both the films would have somewhat died down.

The marketing strategies for both the films have been unique and all touch points have been tapped. This is one the reasons that is drawing cinegoers to theatres in the first week. Over the years Diwali releases have proved to be good box office grossers and one hopes that these two films bring good cheer this festive season.

Tushar Dhingra, COO Adlabs is a happy man. "The advance bookings have been very encouraging. It is going to be the biggest weekends of the year. If you see the amount of marketing and promotions behind both the films as well as the track records of both the directors the films are set for a good response. Adlabs Cinemas has a very solid advance booking at all our 35 locations and 111 screens. The smaller cities are doing well too," says an excited Dhingra.

For Fun Republic Cinemas Saawariya has grossed 70-80 per cent by way of advance bookings across all their screens informs Bhumika Tiwari, Programming Head. "Om Shanti Om has recorded 90-100 per cent bookings for the weekend. In fact we have nothing to sell in some of our theatres. Weekends do look good for both the films. Even in the smaller cities like Agra, Panipat, Lucknow and Gulbarga we are doing good business."

Looks like a Happy Diwali for all.

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