A week ago, the producers of Radhe – Your Most Wanted Bhai surprised one and all as they decided to release the Salman Khan-starrer on Eid in cinemas as well as on a pay-per-view platform, ZeePlex. And now, the trade is abuzz that the upcoming biggie, Bellbottom, starring Akshay Kumar, will premiere on digital. A source informed Bollywood Hungama, “Bellbottom will premiere on Disney+ Hotstar. The makers have agreed to the financials being offered. They feel it’s a practical decision since the theatres would not open anytime soon. The makers and Hotstar team are now deciding when to release this film.”
Bollywood Hungama in January 2021 was the first one to report that Bellbottom makers are in talks with Amazon Prime for a direct-to-digital release. The source adds, “The producers then were toying with the idea of going on OTT directly, and also wanted to gauge the market price of the film. But as cinemas were allowed 100% occupancy in February and more and more producers announced the release dates of their films, Bellbottom makers decided to follow suit.” If the second wave had not caused havoc, it would have released in cinemas on May 28, that is, two weeks after Radhe – Your Most Wanted Bhai.
The source further reveals, “Amazon Prime was still interested in buying the film. But it is being said that Disney+ Hotstar had a better offer and thus won the coveted deal.”
Bellbottom will be the second consecutive film of Akshay Kumar after Laxmii (2020) that will premiere on an OTT platform. Coincidentally, Laxmii was also premiered on Disney+ Hotstar. A trade expert says, “It is possible that Disney+ Hotstar paid a bomb for Bellbottom. Akshay Kumar is a crowd-puller and Bellbottom looks like a slick thriller. It’s sure to generate a lot of craze upon its release.”
Bellbottom also stars Vaani Kapoor, Lara Dutta, Huma S Qureshi and Adil Hussain. Directed by Ranjit M Tewari, it was one of the first Bollywood films to be shot amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
More Pages: Bellbottom Box Office Collection
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