Padmaavat was released on Thursday amid protests in several India states. The Sanjay Leela Bhansali directed film which stars Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor and Ranveer Singh in lead roles took in a huge collection at the box office on opening day.
Padmaavat collected an estimated INR Rs 180 million at the box office on its first day despite some distributors not screening the film.
Police were on high alert across several Indian states as the movie opened with protesters disrupting its release. Extremist groups in the country claim the film portrays queen Padmavati falsely, which has been denied by producers.
Trouble first hit the movie in January last year when Rajput Karni Sena members attacked the film’s director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and vandalised the set during filming in Rajasthan.
Members of the fringe group threatened to attack cinemas, including with swords, on Thursday while hundreds of women have said they are ready to perform a mass self-immolation if screenings go ahead.
Hardliners also offered bounties of up to 50 million rupees ($769,000) to anyone who “beheaded” lead actress Deepika Padukone or Bhansali.
Several states — including Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Punjab — tried to ban the film but India’s Supreme Court has ruled that this would violate creative freedoms.
It was initially due to hit screens on December 1 but filmmakers pushed back the release date and earlier this month India’s censor board cleared it with five changes.-Web Desk