The film, which is the first stand-alone Asian superhero film, opened exclusively in theatres on Friday. According to reports on boxofficeindia.com, the film is heading for the biggest opening day collection for a post-pandemic release.
Although the film was released in fewer theatres than the Akshay Kumar Bollywood film ‘Bell Bottom‘, ‘Shang-Chi’ is set for a big opening, states the advance bookings alone stand at an estimated Rs 1.50 crore nett to Rs 2 crore nett.
Considering that Marvel has a huge fan base in India, and the film ‘Avengers: Endgame’ opened to record-smashing numbers, under normal circumstances, the film would have been flying past the other Hindi releases. However, with theatres running at only 50% occupancy and cinema halls still shut in parts of the country, the numbers are expected to be much lower.
That said, the film also has to share the box office with the Vin Diesel starrer ‘Fast & Furious 9’. Akshay Kumar’s ‘Bell Bottom’ and Amitabh Bachchan’s ‘Chehre‘ are also currently clocking their respective third and second Friday.
Directed and written by Asian Americans, the film centres on trained assassin Shang-Chi trying to live an ordinary life in San Francisco, while trying to step away from his father’s shadow. The film’s team assures that their foray into the Marvel Cinematic Universe is something that speaks to the Asian American experience.
‘Shang-Chi’ comes at a time when Asian Americans are looking for escapism but also to feel more visible. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Asians and Asian Americans have been targets of race-based verbal and physical assault because the virus was first reported in China.
The film is believed to have a lot more pressure tied to its box office success than most of its fellow MCU movies as it will set the stage for future Asian-driven content.