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STREET RAT WINS THE RACE

The longest-running movie in Indian theatres this year was a Hollywood film—and it wasn’t Avengers

Premiere of Disney's Aladdin in Los Angeles
Reuters/Mario Anzuoni
Cause for cheer.
Ananya Bhattacharya
By Ananya Bhattacharya

Tech reporter

In 2019, English movies outshone Hindi and regional language cinema on various fronts.

The Guy Ritchie-directed Disney musical fantasy, Aladdin, stayed in theatres the longest in the world’s second-largest English-speaking country at 179 days, according to data from ticketing platform BookMyShow. The data was collected between Dec. 1, 2018, and Nov. 30, 2019.

The live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1992 animated film of the same name stars Mena Massoud in the titular role. Will Smith played the blue Genie and Naomi Scott Princess Jasmine of Agrabah.

When it came to tickets sold, Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Endgame was the biggest grosser. “The Marvel craze took over India as Avengers: Endgame broke all records to sell over 8.6 million tickets to become the highest-selling Hollywood movie on our platform,” BookMyShow’s Dec. 27 press release said. Second-in-line was Uri, which sold over 5.7 million tickets.

The 22nd film from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, directed by the Russo Brothers, is among the top 10 domestic-earners of all-time in India, beating superstar Salman Khan’s blockbusters like Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Sultan. It was also among the top three trending entertainment topics on Indian Tinder in 2019.

Reports say Jumanji: The Next Level’s opening collection was bigger than both Bollywood moviesMardaani 2 and The Body—released in the same week. In November, Disney’s Frozen 2 fared better than rival Bollywood film Pagalpanti.

Overall, the uptake for English language films increased significantly by 56% vis-à-vis last year, BookMyShow noted. In comparison, demand for Hindi movies climbed by 12%.

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