Devdas has been declared a hit in India, with industry sources telling Screendaily that the film is expected to pass $10m at the box office by the end of its first week in the country.
The film opened to capacity screenings at 300 cinemas across the territory, grossing nearly $50,000 on its first day of release in Mumbai alone.
In comparison, last December Karan Johar's Kabhi Kushi Kabhie Gham (K3G) grossed around $22,000 on its opening day in Mumbai and went on to become one of the biggest films of 2001.
Eyes are now set on the expat market where the film is likely to be a huge hit. At $10.2m, Bollywood's most expensive film ever stars Shah Rukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit and Aishwarya Rai all of whom are extremely popular with the expat audience . Director Sanjay Leela Bhansali's earlier films Khamoshi and Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam were huge hits abroad.
The Producer Bharat Shah is releasing the film with sub-titles in English, Arabic and French. The major territories of the overseas market, valued at $50m a year for Hindi films are: the Middle East market providing 25%of the gross; Europe, primarily the UK providing another 25% and the US and Canada which provide almost 30% of the $50m market.
Hindi films also sell in Singapore, Indonesia, Fiji, Mauritius, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa.