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Bollywood shines when economy is down

Mumbai, Aug 31 () : Bollywood has a good time when the economy suffers.

Figures show that Shah Rukh Khan’s comment that films are like lipstick that sell more during a recession is true. In 2008, the collection of 87 films were Rs 1,189 crore. This was the year India went through the financial meltdown after the collapse of Lehman Brothers in US.

In 2009, India recovered from the crisis and that year collections of Rs 1,168 crore was acquired from 90 films. A fall of 2 per cent. From the start of 2013, till date, the collections stand at Rs 1547 crore while last year it was Rs 1420 crore.

The Rs 100 crore club this year has 4 films and two more like Krrish 3 and Dhoom 3 are lined up. A KPMG-FICCI survey shows that Bollywood has a gala time when the economy is in shambles.

In 2008, when India was going through a rough patch the industry recorded a 12% growth and when it recovered in 2009 it fell by 14%. Four years later when the economy was on the down slide, the film industry reached the 2008 levels.

One theory is that a Rs 125 ticket in a multiplex is cheaper than eating out. While the other reason is that people seek escape from reality by seeing more movies. It is said economists are like the women who are compulsive shoppers to pick up a lipstick instead of a footwear or a handbag since it is affordable. This lipstick syndrome saw a 20% increase in BO in the first half of 2013 even though ticket prices went up 4-5 per cent.

During this period, even if that is factored out, collections have grown handsomely by Chennai Express that touched Rs 200 crore within two weeks and ranks amongst the third most successful Bollywood film after Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots and Salman Khan’s Ek Tha Tiger.

The 2008 meltdown gave two Rs 100 crore films-Rab De Bani De Jodi and Ghajini and Rs 90 crore films like Jodhaa Akbar and Singh is King. Even though nobody has been able to pinpoint the relation between Bollywood and economy, it has become clear that the public obsession with IPL is over and Bollywood has overcome this challenge.

April to May were the three months when no films were released since public was supposed to be watching IPL. Ashiqui 2, Shoot out at Wadala and Chasme Badoor were released this season and all of them did well. Theatres recorded no fall in collections.

In fact, theatres are recording 55% sales during weekends. Apart from the IPL there are other cricket matches happening throughout the year and this has taken the sheen away, feel some. If Chidambaram makes economy come around, then Bollywood would take a hit.

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