“The Amazing Spider-Man” is here, and he speaks more languages than one

The Amazing Spider-Man released yesterday in theatres all over India. With over 1,000 screens showing the movie, it has set the record of being the most widely released Hollywood movie in the country. The movie, distributed by Sony Pictures India, an arm of Columbia pictures, is being released in 2D and 3D formats in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu. But with an equal number of screens showing the dubbed and original versions in the Capital, the dubbed Hollywood film has emerged a significant category in the market.

Starring Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man and Irrfan Khan in a cameo as Dr. Rajit Ratha, The Amazing Spider-Man is being shown in 120 screens across NCR. Of these, 60 are dedicated to showing the Hindi version. The rationale for such a split exists in the fact that, as the fourth instalment of one of the most successful movie franchises of all time, there exists a broad audience for the film. Distributors have sought to maximise the reach of the film by releasing the film in multiple formats. They have pegged the gross box office (GBO) collection from its opening weekend in NCR alone at Rs. 8 crores, and expect it to eclipse the India GBO of Spiderman 3 from its opening weekend which stood at Rs. 20 crores.

Some of the theatres which are screening The Amazing Spider-Man in Hindi are M2K in Pitampura and Rohini, Delite Cinema near Delhi Gate, Satyam Cineplexes in Janak Place and Patel Nagar, and Fun Cinemas in Shahdara and Laxmi Nagar, among others.

“Even theatres that never screened dubbed movies earlier are screening The Amazing Spider-Man. PVR Rivoli is screening the movie in both 2D and 3D formats,” a Sony Pictures India official said. “Barring the Vasant Kunj and Saket areas in South Delhi, and Gurgaon, the dubbed version is being released everywhere,” he added.

“This emphasis on dubbed versions is in keeping with the nature of the audience in Delhi. The market for dubbed films has grown and The Amazing Spider-Man is a mass film that will attract audience from all economic and social sections of the city,” says Uday Kaushish, a film distributor and the owner of Sheila Theatre, one of the halls which will be screening the dubbed version.

Apart from the usual channels of marketing through trailers on television channels and ads in newspapers, the marketing team of the movie has deployed several novel techniques. “We’ve mass-marketed the film by collaborating with Amul and doing press shows in Hindi and English,” says Anjali Malhotra, a spokesperson for the marketing team of the movie. A projection of ‘the mark of the spider’ was also beamed onto India Gate recently and was followed by the information about the release date of the movie

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