The importance of chartbuster music and marketing

We all know India is a music driven country. The kind of opening any movie takes at the box office nowadays depends heavily on the music and how well it’s marketed. Irrespective of the content of a film and star-cast, a chartbuster in a film is a must.

For instance if we look at Ragini MMS 2, the genre was horror and the initial promos did not garner much excitement. However, as soon as ‘Baby Doll’ was released it was a chartbuster, a happy fun party song completely opposite to the mood of the film, that helped play a huge part in guaranteeing the opening of the film.

Ek Villain again had undoubtedly the best music album of 2014; ‘Galliyan’ alone was enough to create the much needed buzz and hype for the film. The film didn’t have a massively popular star-cast, yet it almost managed to beat the opening day business of the biggest superstar in the industry today – Salman Khan’s Jai Ho.

Yaariyaan was promoted non-stop on television channels, but the extensive promotional campaign was only possible because the music album had some terrific songs. Ditto for Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania, 2 States and Main Tera Hero – no big chartbuster, but more than one popular song.

Other songs that have helped create anticipation for films in 2014

  • Sunny Sunny, Allah Waariyan – Yaariyan
  • Whistle Baja and Raat Bhar – Heropanti
  • Tune Maari Entriyaan – Gunday
  • Palat (Tera Hero Idhar Hai) – Main Tera Hero
  • Saturday Saturday, Samjhawaan – Humpty Sharma ki Dulhania
  • Aaj phir tumpe pyaar aaya hai – Hate Story 2

Great music or chartbusters may not help a film in the long term (after the first weekend), but it provides that massive boost to the opening day business. Surprisingly, out of the four 100 crore films this year, 3 are by the same music company T-Series which are Ek Villain, 2 States and Jai Ho. Only Holiday, a film that did not boast of any chartbuster, was the exception. However, that film took an average start at the box office and relied heavily on word of mouth publicity to recover its costs. One or two chartbusters in Holiday would not only have resulted in the film taking a much better start, but it would have also helped the film go on to be a much bigger grosser.

Which is your favourite song of the year? What do you think of the importance of good music? Tell us!

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38 Comments

  • Music is Definitely a big big factor…
    Jai ho and holiday lacked a popular track which resulted in their underperformance…
    Ek villain n yaariyan are the best examples of how music can help you secure a good opening…

  • Banjaara from Ek Villain is currently my favourite song of the year…
    My other fav songs of this year are:
    Galliyan
    Awari
    Ishq bulaava
    Samjhaawan
    Baarish
    Palat
    Muskuraane ki wajah
    Tu hi toh hai

  • Mast magan was definitely the best followed by zehnaseeb and sooha sahaa.btw even 2 states music was extremely popular.from locha-e-ulfat to offo to finally mast magan it was simlpy superb and I m nt saying this bcz it was an arjun kapoor.plz add 2 states to that list.thank u.

  • Last few Akki films did’nt had music…
    OUATIMD-Music was dull in comparison to its prequel

    Boss-Party all night song was there but it did’nt went well with the family audience

    Special26-no popular song

    Holiday-lacked a chartbuster track

  • Every time I listen to zehnaseeb,sooha sahaa and mast magan I literally get goosebumps.they r my fav songs of this year so far.

  • My top3 albums of this year:-
    1.ek villain
    2.2 staes
    3.hasee toh phasee

    Worst3:-
    1.xpose
    2.kick
    3.heropanti

  • Superb article. Even a film starring a newcomer can open as well as a non-holiday superstar film, if it has great music, fresh star cast and good promotion.

    Ek Villain not only worked because of music (which played a huge role), but also because of Mohit Suri and Shraddha Kapoor coming together with a promising newcomer like Siddharth. Ritesh Deshmukh’s presence also helped.

    Ragini MMS2 was selling sex and combo of horror and sex always works with Indian audience.

    Heropanti I think took a good opening not because of music but Tiger Shroff factor and action. Worked at mass centres only if I am not wrong.

    Gunday looked like a big film right from its first trailer so again not sure if music played a major role.

    But yes.. agree with the point that for films starring SRK, Salman, Aamir or Hrithik music can play a big role. Akshay’s Holiday would have collected minimum 16 crore on first day plus been a 130-140 cr grosser if it was marketed well and had good music. Promotion of Holiday was a big joke, they released music a week before release I think.

  • @indicine, do you think if a film has a very poor trailer and bad content.. music alone can save it? I can’t remember any movie now, but there surely must have been movies with chartbuster music.. but it didn’t open well because of bad trailer and content.

  • i agree with you @Indicine, even 2 or 3 hit songs is enough and promise good opening.
    my favourite songs so far.
    Ghaliyan
    Awari
    Saturday..saturday.

  • Yeah… 2 states worked due to music and novel factor. Kisses of alia helped. So 2 states was chetan and alia starrer. Ditto ek villain. Jai ho worked due to salman salman salman. Ditto holiday,kick,singham2

  • music is very important dese dayzz n so are the marketing n promotions.
    last year’s yjhd is d biggest xample..though it hav xcellent wom which resulted in its lifetime
    but one shd remember only music n marketing cant help… first look n trailer shd generate curiosity among audience too. ek villain.’s trailer was quite well edited so was yjhd. abt 2 states…besides its average to good songs wot worked in its favour was the fanbase of its novel. ragini mms 2 had sex besides baby doll.. n mth’s trailer was way too funny. gunday looked huge from its promos n chartbuster songs wer an added advantage. to me the surprise hit was heropanti… though the movie has good music but beside dat it didnt hav anything in its favour…also its lead actor isnt dat good..hez more feminish. wot I wanna say is k a movie needs one or two good thing wid music n marketing like starpower a well crafted trailer popular novel to get an opening

  • @king absltly correct.wat abt k786 and boss??despite hvng hit music and a superstar they opened blw avg and ended up becaming failures.@thullu cn u tell me the name of the superstar who starred in these musically hit but box office wise flop film??

  • @arjun kapoor aka attention seeker, hav u listen any song of Kick? Duff man, even ask any srk fan he wil deny ur thought.

  • @king @arjun
    Now everthing does’nt depend on music,ok k786 music was popular..but the trailer n promos were epic crap ones and so was the film…also it was akki’s 5th release that year aftr RR,HF2,Joker n OMG,so audience were’nt interested that much…still it did ok business and was an average grosser at the boxoffice.

  • Kick is Best album of the year…! Not heard much from any other album but got 4 songs from kick on my playlist to give me my Kick start in the morning enroute to another day at the office…!

  • Chartbuster music ensures good initials but its great songs that ensure a spark is lit inside audiences heart thus repetitive viewings are guaranteed. Guzarish from Ghajini or Pee Loon from OUATIM or Tum Hi Ho from Aashiqui 2 ensured I came back and watched those movies multiple times in theatres. Very few films can have that special song that strikes the right chord but occasionally it happens but it must be worth noting that the movie also needs some soul to it to make you come back again.

  • @Arjun Kapoor..there are lot of movies which had good music, but still became a flop/avg..Lootera, Kites, Boss, K786, Kurbaan, AHAT, Saawariya etc etc

    same way there were Hit movies which didn’t have great music i.e D3, D2(music became popular after the movie release), Dabangg 2, Holiday, K3, CE, Don 2 etc etc..so its a combination of both wherein for Big stars, their name itself is enough to garner an initial(Jai Ho) and for small stars, its chartbuster music(HSKD, EV)!!!

  • Salman khan biggest superstar? How can u please explain indicine. This bhai of yours haven’t dileverd a single highest grosser of Bollywood since 20 years! While SRK n aamir had already collected 100 cr in 3 days n only superstars in 200 cr club.while our bhabhi is yet to cross 185 crs

  • @vikram aamir and srk r dfnly the biggest stars of bollywood right nw unless kick bcms an epic blockbuster with solid content.if kick does hv solid content still it would easily be beaten b.o. wise and content wise by p.k. and hny as srk and aamir’s films always hv 20-30% better content than any salman film.

  • kick has best album, chartbuster song and music, my day start bhaijaan in bed i get my kick with listening songs of kick with bhaijaan in my bed. Its best music of the year, i did not heard other albums much more, kick is best.. When everybody kick their bike they also can listen song of kick start from vehicle.

  • LOL!! KICK will rewrite box office history this Eid. Just can’t wait for Friday!!

    @Sickrum, whether sick people accept it or not, Salman is universally accepted as the biggest super star of the industry today. The sick fans of Karan’s ex-wife will get sicker when Kick is released.

  • I dont think, music play a big role in huge budgeted movie. Offcourse it help slightly, but not as much as small budget movies. Good melodious music help romantic movies to open good. If we look few latest huge grosser like D3, ce, krrish 3, ett, bodyguard none had very good music.

    I guess, most people mixed up with good music with well promoted music with catch phrase.

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