With TheSmallBigIdea, Ajay Devgn starrer Bholaa managed to create pre-buzz hype using the movie's behind-the-scenes footage, receiving total 113 million views.
This Case Study explores how TheSmallBigIdea created a web of behind-the-scenes content to build excitement among audiences regarding Ajay Devgn’s comeback action movie, Bholaa.
According to the FICCI EY Report 2023, Hindi cinema ceded 17% market share since 2019 and the Hindi cinema films contributed 33% of the total box office collection in 2022. The Hindi Film Industry has witnessed a decent performance in the first quarter, with notable contributions from Pathaan and a few other releases like Selfiee, Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar, and Bholaa, which have been successful at the box office. According to Bollywood’s Box Office Report for Q1 2023, Bollywood's collection reached 813 crore nett.
Ajay Devgn and Tabu starrer Bholaa opened well and is projected to achieve a lifetime total of around Rs 80-85 crore net in India, with a worldwide collection of approximately Rs 110-115 crore.
Following Ajay Devgn's short hiatus from action films, the anticipation for his then-upcoming action movie, Bholaa, was at an all-time high. To sustain and build on this excitement among audiences, TheSmallBigIdea adopted a proactive approach by constantly releasing exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, providing fans with exciting glimpses of what to expect before the official trailer release. This strategy helped to maintain buzz and intrigue around the movie, while also generating interest and engagement among viewers.
The objective behind releasing behind the scene footage of the movie was to sustain and build excitement among audiences regarding Ajay Devgn’s comeback action movie, Bholaa. The makers wanted to maintain buzz and intrigue around the movie before the official trailer launch and garner maximum engagement and give the audience an insight into what went behind creating Bholaa.
The idea was to leverage the behind-the-scenes of Bholaa to promote the film. The SmallBigIdea adopted a proactive approach by releasing exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, providing fans with exciting glimpses of what to expect before the official trailer release.
TheSmallBigIdea was responsible for every aspect of the Behind the Scenes (BTS) production for Bholaa, starting from its initial stages to its final execution. This includes handling the filming of the behind-the-scenes footage as well as churning out assets associated with it. The agency leveraged the behind-the-scenes of Bholaa across various assets to create constant engagement amongst the audience.
Glimpse Behind Key Assets
The team at TheSmallBigIdea provided exclusive behind-the-scenes access to the fans for key assets of the movie like teasers, trailers, and action sequences. This strategy allowed viewers to gain a deeper insight into the making of Bholaa, while also fostering a greater connection with the movie and its cast and crew.
The Making of Bholaa Soundtrack
In a similar vein, they employed a similar strategy for promoting the film's music by releasing a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the song after its initial release. The aim was to deepen the audiences’ appreciation for the soundtrack and enhance their connection to the film through this approach.
Building the world and characters of Bholaa
The agency delved deeper into the world of Bholaa and the supporting cast, examining each character's significance in the movie by using behind-the-scenes footage and actor bytes. The evolution of every vital character was explored, from the conception of their traits and personalities in the script to their portrayal on screen.
Ajay Devgn -- The Director
As a part of the movie marketing strategy, the agency also wanted to put a spotlight on Ajay Devgn's dual role as both actor and director in Bholaa. His fourth directorial venture provided the agency with an opportunity to examine his evolution as a filmmaker with the audience, while also showcasing his return to his action roots, much like his father before him, thus coming full circle with his career.
Making it Topical
The agency utilized behind-the-scenes in a distinctive way by integrating significant and noteworthy days with it. For example, the team celebrated Women’s Day by highlighting female characters from the movie, incorporating behind-the-scenes of these strong women. By connecting the "behind the scenes" content with important occasions, the agency was able to engage the audiences.
Creating Bholaa's journey
Moving beyond the sets of the movie, the agency's approach aimed at engaging not just the physical audience but also the online viewers by providing them with an exclusive glimpse of Ajay Devgn's promotional activities for the movie, thus taking them along for the ride at every step of the way.
The overall movie marketing campaign for Bholaa garnered a reach of 289 million across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. The campaign received total views of 113 million creating an engagement of 12.7 million.
By providing the audiences with behind-the-scenes, the campaign resulted in fostering a connection between the audiences and the movie. It also helped in deepening the audience’s appreciation for the film’s soundtrack and threw a spotlight on the dual roles of a director and an actor, essayed by Ajay Devgn.
TheSmallBigIdea’s behind-the-scenes campaign engaged the audiences and acted as a complimentary add-on to major assets of the movie. The agency’s efforts resulted in creating a journey for the audience much like the one Bholaa takes, over the course of the movie. From the teaser to its eventual release, Bholaa remained an exciting joyride for the audience.
Harikrishnan Pillai, CEO and Co-Founder, TheSmallBigIdea said, “Bholaa is not just a film, but a tribute by Ajay Devgn to his father, a larger-than-life dedication that has created a great cinematic experience. With high-intensity action, and multi-faceted roles in acting, directing, and producing, Bholaa is not a film for the faint-hearted. To capture the variety in action which comprised of chases, fistfights, gunfights, etc., we, at TheSmallBigIdea, had to step beyond conventional content pieces. Along with these, we also had interesting songs with stories woven around them. Because it was inspired by a film, it was imperative for us to build a narrative beyond the story. The team at TheSmallBigIdea spent over 120 days with the crew, capturing every nuance, then shot with the cast, stitched it all together, and released 16 different assets. The campaign results were overwhelming - we received great traction, changing how big-ticket movie marketing narratives are seen. For us, Bholaa is more than just a film - it's an experience, that we thoroughly enjoyed.”