×

‘Padmaavat’ Reaches for Third Spot at Weekend Global Box Office 

Proving that controversy sells tickets, Indian film “Padmaavat” is homing in on the No. 3 spot at the global box office over the past weekend.

With grosses not yet available from Pakistan or the Middle East, “Padmaavat” has earned $30.5 million in four days, from Thursday to Sunday. That includes $22.8 million from India, where distributors in four states chose not to release the film for fear of mob violence.

In India it opened across 4,000 screens last Thursday and benefited from the long Republic Day holiday weekend. It was made on a $30 million budget, backed by Viacom18, and counts Paramount as a distributor in some territories.

Distributed in the U.S. by Viva Entertainment, “Padmaavat” opened there on 324 screens and bowed at No. 11, with $4.1 million over the weekend proper and $4.7 million over four days. In Australia, the film grossed $1.4 million, and $307,000 in New Zealand. It collected $1.2 million in the U.K.

Global film rankings from international tracking service ComScore show “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” as the weekend winner with a worldwide $86.1 million, followed by “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” with $34.1 million. ComScore, however, does not provide global coverage for every film released and excluded “Padmaavat” outside North America. Had it been included, the Indian epic would have jostled with “The Greatest Showman” ($19.6 million in three days), fellow Indian title “Secret Superstar” ($19 million in three days, largely from China), and Steven Spielberg’s “The Post” for a leading chart position.

“Padmaavat,” starring marquee names Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor, is about the machinations of a Muslim invader to win over a Hindu queen who is married to a king of the Rajput warrior class. It was dogged by controversy from the time it began shooting, with Rajput fringe groups alleging that there was a romantic dream sequence between the Muslim ruler and the Hindu queen, and that history had been distorted.

India’s Central Board of Film Certification and the Supreme Court approved the film for release, but pre-release protests turned violent. In one incident caught on video that went viral, anti-“Padmaavat” protesters pelted a school bus with stones. The protest groups had not seen the film.

Upon release, it became clear to the protesters and the audience alike that the film glorifies the Rajput community, rather than vilifying it, and the protests died away quickly. The film now has nearly two weeks to enjoy its momentum before the next major release, “Padman,” on Feb. 9.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Fernando Meirelles The Two Popes

    AFI Fest Adds 'The Two Popes,' 'Aeronauts,' Alan Pakula Tribute

    The American Film Institute has added “The Two Popes” and “The Aeronauts” as galas during the upcoming AFI Fest along with a tribute to the late director Alan Pakula. AFI had previously announced that the romantic drama “Queen & Slim” would launch the 33rd annual festival on Nov. 14 and close with the world premiere [...]

  • Julie Andrews

    Julie Andrews Recalls Husband Blake Edwards' Battle With Depression

    The line to see Julie Andrews at the 92Y wrapped around the square of a sprawling New York City block. Seventy years since the start of her career, 60 since she asked “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly?” as Lerner and Loewe’s first Eliza and 50 since she sang “The Sound of Music” before the Eastern Alps [...]

  • Bloodshot (Vin Diesel) in Columbia Pictures'

    Vin Diesel Comes Back to Life in 'Bloodshot' Trailer

    Vin Diesel is coming back again and again in Sony Pictures’ first trailer for “Bloodshot.” In the forthcoming superhero adventure, Diesel portrays Ray Garrison a.k.a. Bloodshot, a soldier who gets rebuilt by a corporation following his death. The clip, released Monday and scored to Johnny Cash’s rendition of the ballad “Memories are Made of This,” [...]

  • Bouli Lanners Teams With 'Peaky Blinders'

    Bouli Lanners Teams With 'Peaky Blinders' Director Tim Mielants on 'Wise Blood'

    Bouli Lanners, the Belgian actor-director of “The Giants” and “Eldorado,” is teaming with “Peaky Blinders” helmer Tim Mielants to direct “Wise Blood,” an English-language film that will star “Game of Thrones” actor Michelle Fairley and Julian Glover. “Wise Blood” is a Belgian-Scottish-French co-production between Versus Production, Barry Crerar, and Playtime, which will handle international sales [...]

  • Bombshell Charlize Theron Megyn Kelly

    'Bombshell': Why Charlize Theron Was Terrified of Playing Megyn Kelly

    Charlize Theron is getting some of the best buzz of her career for channeling Megyn Kelly in “Bombshell,” but the Oscar-winning actress admits she almost turned down the role. “I was shit scared,” Theron said during a question-and-answer session following a Manhattan screening of “Bombshell” on Sunday. Partly, she was worried about portraying someone who [...]

  • Sean Hayes and Todd Milliner's Hazy

    Sean Hayes and Todd Milliner's Hazy Mills to Co-Produce SAG Awards

    Sean Hayes and Todd Milliner’s Hazy Mills Productions have joined the SAG Awards producing team. The guild announced this morning that Kathy Connell will once again serve as the show’s producer along with Hayes and Milliner in partnership with Avalon Harbor. “Attending the SAG Awards has always been a pleasure and a privilege for me,” [...]

  • Maleficent Mistress of Evil

    Box Office: Why 'Maleficent: Mistress of Evil' Fizzled

    Despite nabbing first place at the domestic box office, Disney’s “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” debuted significantly below expectations and demonstrated that even the most powerful studio in Hollywood is susceptible to missteps. The follow-up to 2014’s “Maleficent” kicked off in North America with a lackluster $36 million bow, an underwhelming result for a film that [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content