Updated: February 4, 2018
"Padmaavat”, the controversial Bollywood movie boasting one of the highest budgets for an Indian film ever, tells the real-life love story of the Rajput Queen Padmavati and Rana Rawal Singh, the Rajput ruler of Mewar, which was destroyed by the ruler of the Delhi Sultanate in 14th century India, Alauddin Khilji.
In the months leading up to its release, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s new history-drama movie “Padmaavat” has sparked lively debates and controversy within the film industry in India and with audiences. Although many voices cried out for the movie to be banned from theaters, the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) has decided to pass it with an “U/A” certification, as long as certain conditions and modifications are taken into account, according to an article of The Hindu on December 30, 2017.
With the controversy in full swing, it’s no surprise that the increased attention the film has been getting also piqued interest among fans using P2P networks. With a star-studded cast, including famous Indian actors Deepika Padukone, Anupriya Goenka and Ranveer Singh, the film now has a slew of fans eagerly awaiting its release. Sadly, the controversy hasn’t just had positive effects – fierce protests surrounding the release also led to violence in recent days.
On a more technical side, the publicity and anticipation for the movie has led to rampant movie piracy of “Padmaavat” in P2P networks, which began rolling in immediately after the movie hit theaters.
By the end of January 25, 2018 – the date of the first official screening – 17 torrent files were floating around P2P networks, which we reported in the TECXIPIO leak alert. In the few hours since then, roughly 81,500 P2P users have downloaded files containing “Padmaavat”.
In the period from the theatrical release to February 4, 2018, a total of 1,711,504 worldwide file sharers downloaded and shared files of the movie (No. of torrent files: 59), most of them watching the controversial Bollywood movie from Indian metro cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Pune and Hyderabad. To be specific, almost 83% of “Padmaavat” fans are based in India. The remaining 17% are spread throughout many different countries – with Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates following India as countries with the second and third-highest number of file sharers downloading Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s latest work (125,075 downloads and 18,827 downloads, respectively).
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Compared with "Airlift" and “Raees” – the Bollywood movies leading 2016's and 2017’s top 10 Hindi movie list, respectively – “Padmaavat” also attracted a high number of P2P users in the first four days. As a result, the history-drama has even landed in spot 2 of the top Hindi movie chart of January 2018, what further underscores the demand for the movie. Despite the huge number of fans downloading and sharing files of "Padmaavat" on its official release day, both movies leading the top lists of the last two years showed a better performance on the days that followed (see infographic).
UPDATE: Download full infographic
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Facts about the controversial movie “Padmaavat”:
Genre: Drama, History, Romance*
Release date (India): January 25, 2018*
First seen torrent: January 25, 2018
Director: Sanjay Leela Bhansali*
Writers: Prakash Kapadia and Sanjay Leela Bhansali*
Stars: Deepika Padukone, Anupriya Goenka, Ranveer Singh*
Production companies: Bhansali Productions, Viacom18 Motion Pictures*
Box office collection: 212.50 crore**
Total number of file sharers (1/25/2018-2/4/2018): 1,711,504
Source: TECXIPIO PIC
Definition: The rankings are based on the number of unique file sharers: How many peers (file sharers) shared at least one file of the Bollywood movie “Padmaavat"?
** The Indian Express