Bollywood blockbuster beats Star Wars at the UAE box office
There was a serious amount of hype in the lead up to the latest Star Wars movie, Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Some of the scenes were filmed in the Abu Dhabi desert, with the UAE landscape providing the backdrop for the Jakku desert. But most of the anticipation was simply down to the fact that the world is full of Star Wars fans, which has put the seventh movie on track to become the biggest box office hit of all time, brining in $1.5 billion.
In the first week of its UAE release, however, it was a different story. According to Arabian Business, Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan’s latest film shot Star Wars: The Force Awakens out of the water shortly after opening. The musical comedy Dilwale was released on the same day (December 17) and it brought in 310,607 UAE cinemagoers in the first week. That generated a whopping AED11,375,845 in earnings.
And as for Star Wars, despite being shown at nearly three times as many cinema screens as Dilwale, it made AED10,281,456.
Dilwale tells the story of two people who fall in love despite the bitter conflict between their families, and it has been a massive hit amongst Bollywood fans.
Although it overshadowed other films in its first week, in the second week Star Wars clawed back, and with 3D screenings selling at a higher ticket value, it edged slightly ahead of its Bollywood rival.
This shows the popularity of Bollywood cinema in the UAE. On a global scale, the figures look very different, with Dilwale earning a respectable $32 million, which pales in comparison to the seventh Star Wars movie’s final takings – apparently the film is on course to make $1,510,765,583.
Impressive figures on both sides.