Telugu cinema: 2023 ends with a ‘Salaar’ bang

Began on an encouraging note with two hits in the first month of January, the year 2023 delivered a huge hit of Salaar: part-1 Ceasefire making the Telugu cinema stand tall in the country. Released on December 22, Salaar, the Prabhas starrer, is ruling roost at the box office minting money all over the world. Directed by Prashant Neel, the KGF fame, the Rs. 400-crore budget movie collected close to Rs. 500-crore gross worldwide in just five days. The action-packed multi-lingual film has become the highest opening day grosser this year by netting over Rs. 178 crore bringing cheer to distributors.

Mega hit for Chiru

Adding another feather to the cap of actor Chiranjeevi, Waltair Veerayya, which was released for Pongal, turned out to be the highest-grosser in his glorious film career. Made with a budget of Rs. 140 crore, it collected Rs. 236 crore bringing profits to buyers. However, Bhola Shankar, his other movie released in August, bombed at the box office incurring losses in crores.

Balayya ‘unstoppable’

On cloud nine since the runaway success of Akhanda last year, Balakrishna continues the success streak with the two flicks released this year getting positive talk. Veera Simha Reddy, which clashed with Waltair Veerayya during Pongal, did equally well and earned a gross of Rs. 140 crore.
Bhagavant Kesari, his second movie released in the year, also got a hit talk and made decent collections making his fans a happy lot.

‘Bro’ disappoints

Starved of a strong hit for a long, Pawan Kalyan disappointed his fans this year too as his movie ‘Bro’ failed to draw crowds to theatres. Despite the initial positive talk, the film fizzled out and could not be a hit commercially.

Double dhamaka for Nani

Actor Nani was lucky this year as his two films — Dasara and Hi Nanna — were well received by cinegoers. While Dasara was a big hit, Hi Nanna struck a chord with the audience.

A small film makes it big

Made with just Rs. 3 crore, Balagam made it big netting over Rs. 26 crore. Directed by Venu Yeldandi, the family drama received a crop of awards winning accolades from all sections. Released in March, it was the directorial debut for Venu who is well known for his Jabardast skits.

Sir, the first straight Telugu film of Tamil hero Dhanush, Virupaksha, Baby, Miss Polyshetty Mr. Polishetty, Polimera 2, Writer Padmabhushan, and Samajavaragamana were among the hits this year. Of the dubbed movies that did well at the box office include Varasudu, Jailer, Jawan and Animal.


Released amid much hype and high expectations, Aadipurush of Prabhas came a cropper dashing the hopes of his fans. Another big movie that turned out to be a dud was Bhola Shankar of Chiranjeevi. Directed by Meher Ramesh, it collected only Rs. 42 crore, while its budget was over Rs. 100 crore. Shakuntalam of Samanta starrer was another big flop of the year. Agent of Akil Akkineni, Naga Chaitanya starrer Custody and Ravanasura of Raviteja were among the flops. With a couple of hits and a crop of flops, the year 2023 was a mixed bag for the Telugu cinema.

Stay tuned to Yo! Vizag website and Instagram for more entertainment updates.

This article is written by Senior Journalist Lakkoju Nagesh Babu

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