'Highway' takes lead at the box office
New Delhi: Alia Bhatt and Randeep Hooda-starrer "Highway" may not be a big grosser at the box office, but it is shinning brighter than Jimmy Sheirgill's “[email protected] Mall”, say trade pundits. The Imtiaz Ali directorial has collected around Rs.15 crore in India, leaving “[email protected] Mall” far behind despite both films reportedly hitting around same number of screens i.e approximately 800 in the country Feb 21. “‘[email protected] Mall’ has earned around Rs.3.5 crore in four days. 'Highway' has collected between Rs.15 crore and Rs.15.5 crore,” Rajesh Thadani of Multimedia Combines told IANS. Puneet Sahay of Spice Cinemas says “Highway”, co-produced by Imtiaz and Sajid Nadiadwala, picked up well on weekend. “The occupancy on the opening day was only 42 percent. It picked up on Saturday with 78 percent occupancy. ‘Highway’ did better on Sunday with 83 percent occupancy. The audience appreciated Alia’s acting and also the picturisation,” said Sahay and added: "On Monday, the occupancy dropped to 35 percent." "‘[email protected] Mall' is not doing well. It was around 20 percent in first three days and on Monday only 15 percent," he said. It’s not just the audiences, who were stunned by Alia’s screen presence, megastar Amitabh Bachchan also praised the 20-year-old in his tweet. “‘HtohP'(‘Hasee Toh Phasee') and 'Highway' ... two films back to back and did not want to come away from them. Parineeti and Alia ... gems,” Amitabh tweeted Sunday. Actress Raima Sen was spellbound too by Alia’s acting prowess in the film that also stars Randeep Hooda. “Saw ‘Highway'. Alia totally rocked! New star is born,” Raima tweeted Monday.