Marathi movie sets cash registers ringing in Dubai

Stars of period drama Chandramukhi overwhelmed by response


Mazhar Farooqui

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Published: Tue 10 May 2022, 2:21 PM

One would have thought that a Marathi movie wouldn’t stand much of a chance at the box office in Dubai. The assumption is not misplaced. No Marathi movie has ever lasted more than a few days in the UAE. However, Chandramukhi, a Marathi musical love story set in the Eighties, has bucked the trend. And it has done that in the fiercely competitive Eid weekend in Dubai when as many as 13 movies were vying for eyeballs.

The period drama has been running to packed theatres in the city even two weeks after its release.

Chandramukhi’s lead actors, who were in town to promote the movie, said they are overwhelmed by the response.

“This is truly incredible. We couldn’t have asked for anything more,” said Amruta Khanvilkar, who plays the titular role in the film opposite Adninath Kothathe.

Based on Vishwas Patil’s engaging novel by the same name, Chandramukhi follows a convoluted and amorous plot which unites and entangles the diametrically opposite worlds of politics and dance.

Khanvilkar, a Lavni [traditional dancer from the Indian state of Maharashtra] falls in love with Daulat Deshmane (Kothare) a happily married politician who is tipped to become a minister.

Their extra-marital relationship could destroy his career and family.

“Playing Chandra was very challenging as I had to gain weight and learn classical dance. I am glad I pulled it off,” said Khanvilkar, who has starred in Bollywood movies like Raazi, Satyameva Jayate and Malang.

Kothare said Chandramukhi’s success has proved that Dubai has a great appetite for Marathi movies.

“Good content transcends language barriers. I am happy that a regional movie could connect audiences across oceans,” he said.

Intikhab Chougle, chief operating officer of Vistas Media, the UAE-based distributors of Chandramukhi said cinemas were initially reluctant to release the movie on the busy Eid weekend as they were not sure how it would fare.

“We stand vindicated,” he said.

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