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Rajkummar Rao, Janhvi Kapoor and Varun Sharma in 'Roohi'. Image Credit: Supplied

Bollywood actors Janhvi Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao and Varun Sharma’s horror-comedy film ‘Roohi’, which received mixed responses, has made Rs30.6 million (Dh1.5 million) on its opening day.

The Hardik Mehta movie, out now in the UAE, is the first major Bollywood release post the COVID-19 lockdown.

Exhibitors, who seem to be thrilled, have applauded the Mehta directorial for making the much-needed first move to release on the big screen.

Speaking about the film’s wide appeal, Gautam Dutta, CEO, PVR Limited said, “‘Roohi’ has boosted the confidence of the exhibition industry and also reposed the faith of audiences to provide them wholesome entertainment in the safe and secure environment of cinemas. ‘Roohi’ is receiving good feedback from movie patrons across geographic locations and it is encouraging to see such excellent footfalls.”

Saurabh Verma of Inox said, “The response of ‘Roohi’ is better than even what we had expected. We can only hear laughter in our auditoriums. It is the perfect post-pandemic stress relief film.”

Film exhibitor Akshaye Rathi echoed similar thoughts, saying, “Considering the current scenario, the footfalls are very encouraging. We have seen a 200 per cent jump from the morning to evening shows. Since the reopening of theatres, ‘Roohi’ is possibly the first Hindi film that is drawing people to cinemas in large numbers.”

On such promising signs, Priyanka Chaudhary, CFO, Jio Studios said, “We have always backed content-driven films and Roohi with a 2200+ screen release was just perfect to bring back the magic of cinemas. We are so delighted that audiences all over India are responding with so much love and positivity.”

‘Roohi’, which was previously called ‘Rooh Afza’ and then ‘Roohi Afzana’, was initially slated to hit the theatres in the first week of June, last year. However, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the makers had to postpone the release date.

A Jio Studios Presentation, ‘Roohi’ is produced by Dinesh Vijan and Mrighdeep Singh Lamba. The film marks the first-ever collaboration of Rao and Kapoor. Rao and Sharma have earlier shared screen space in the 2015 release ‘Dolly Ki Doli’.

The horror-comedy also become the first film to arrive in theatres after the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting allowed cinema halls nationwide to operate at full capacity from February 1 with COVID-19 safety protocols put in place.

The film is based on the lines of the 2018 hit film ‘Stree’, which featured Shraddha Kapoor and Rajkummar Rao in lead roles.