Dhoom 3 Is Biggest Bollywood Crossover Into America Ever

Dhoom 3 is the rare Bollywood that takes place in the United States rather than India, so it only seems appropriate that the action movie would make the migration to American shores for its debut.

The third installment of the popular Dhoom series had the widest ever release for an Indian film in North America, debuting this week in 236 theaters. Despite some mixed reviews, Dhoom 3 exceeded expectations in America, reaching the No. 10 list for the week with an estimated $3.3 million weekend gross for an average of $14,000 per theater.

Dhoom 3 is a departure from the first two movies in the action/comedy series, which focused on Indian buddy cops, the smart Jai, (Abhishek Bachchan) and comic relief Ali (Uday Chopra). This movie centers on Aamir Khan, who plays an acrobat and illusionist named Sahir who lives in Chicago.

The success of the film isn’t a surprise to those in cinema circles. The Hollywood Reporter noted that Dhoom 3 is set apart by its top-notch special effects and “dazzlingly mounted dance numbers that fill up the screen with life and color.”

After its strong opening weekend, the movie now has a good chance of beating the all-time top grossing Indian film in America, 3 Idiots, which grossed a total of $6.5 million.

Bollywood films tend to see a 60 percent drop after the first week, but experts think Dhoom 3 could actually grow stronger thank to good word of mouth.

“I saw the film the first show the first day,” said one New Jersey moviegoer. “Out of the theater, I was busy calling over a dozen friends what a fabulous time pass film it is and many of us decided to join me after couple of days.”

Dhoom 3 has also done well in worldwide markets, grossing a total of $8.5 million in three days. The actual figures may be even higher as financial analysts think the total is closer to $10 million. The movie now has its sights on the all-time Bollywood overseas record of $23 million set by the Shah Rukh Khan movie My Name is Khan.