Salman Khan’s ‘Sultan’ set for major release in Pak on Eid week

Last year during Eid season, Salman Khan’s ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ shattered box-office records in both India and Pakistan, and this year, it is the turn of the superstar’s sports-based film ‘Sultan’.

While the Salman Khan and Anushka Sharma starrer film will have a solo release in India on July 6, across the border ‘Sultan’ will reportedly face competition from two native and four Hollywood movies. But despite the competition, ‘Sultan’ is widely tipped to draw major business in Pakistan.

Local trade pundits are of the view that the Ali Abbas Zafar directorial will become the most profitable movie.

"This Eid ul-Fitr, 'Sultan' is expected to be the most profitable film among the multiple releases lining up at the theatres. What remains to be seen is whether it will break the several box office records set by 'Jawani Phir Nahi Ani' last year," Muhammad Nasir, Geo Films representative, was quoted as saying in a report.

The Humayun Saeed-starrer comedy became the highest grossing Pakistan film ever earning a total of over Rs 465 million at the box-office.

"There are no major releases set to compete with it. It's clear that there is no major competition. We are expecting it will earn Rs 70-75 million during Eid holidays. We are pinning high hopes on 'Sultan' because of Salman's huge following in Pakistan and his track record of ruling the box office during Eid season," Nasir added.

‘Sultan’ is being distributed in Pakistan by Geo Films.  'Sultan' is being released in around 75 screens in 55 cinemas, a number slightly lower than that of 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' that released on 80 screens. However, it is not likely to affect the business by a large percentage.

According to film exhibitor Nadeem Mandviwala, all the shows of ‘Sultan’ on the first five days have already been sold out in Pakistani cinemas. Cinepax, the largest cinema chain in Pakistan, says 80 per cent of the total 350 shows for ‘Sultan’ scheduled across five days in the Cinepax network, have been sold out.

The other films that will fight out with ‘Sultan’ at Pakistani box-office are Urdu films 'Sawal Saat Sau Crore Ka' and 'Blind Love', along with Hollywood films 'Finding Dory', 'Ice Age: Collision Course', 'The Legend of Tarzan' and 'The Secret Life of Pets'.