After three consecutively disappointing months at the box office, 2023 needed a big performance from May and got just that, as per The India Box Office Report by Ormax Media. With an overall collection of Rs 763 crore, May became the second-best performing month of the year after January, which had roped in Rs 1,388 crore.
Compared to 2022, box office numbers for the first five months of the year are down by 22 per cent.
While different language industries use different parameters for assessing box office numbers (Gross, Nett or Share), Ormax’s report adopts Gross Box Office as the unified measurement. Under this, a film’s collection is always attributed to the month of its release, even if the film goes on to produce more or better numbers in the subsequent months. For films released in multiple languages, box office numbers reflect the contribution of such films to all the corresponding languages.
The Kerala Story skyrockets to the top
Fuelled by sociopolitical controversy, Sudipto Sen’s The Kerala Story amassed Rs 268 crore in May, also helped by its release just five days into the month. Its impressive collection has seen it leapfrog Varisu into second place on the list of the highest grossing films of the year. As of now, The Kerala Story only trails Pathaan (Rs 646 crore) on the 2023 charts, though catching up with the blockbuster starring Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone and John Abraham seems unlikely.
Two other films surpassed the Rs 100 crore mark in May, with Hollywood action flick Fast X, featuring Vin Diesel and Jason Momoa, finishing the month on Rs 135 crore, and 2018, a Malayalam drama premised on catastrophic floods, bringing in Rs 103 crore. Rounding up the top five are Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (at Rs 72 crore) and Tamil drama Pichaikkaran 2 (at Rs 34 crore).
Hindi’s share remains steady at the box office
With May boosting box office numbers significantly, 2023 is now projected to gross Rs 9,211 crore at the box office. That, however, will not be enough to equal last year’s tally of Rs 10,637 crore. To match 2022’s collection, the remaining seven months of the year have to average at least Rs 971 crore per month, something that demands one or more blockbusters every month.
In terms of language share, Hindi remains steady, with its 38 per cent share being the same as April. Meanwhile, the share of both Telugu and Tamil has dipped since April, with the two segments closing out May at 20 per cent and 18 per cent, respectively.