The makers of two big-budget films – Akshay Kumar’s Sooryavanshi and Ranveer Singh’s 83 – are willing to wait for a couple of months and will not rush for an OTT platform release. According to a new report in Mid Day, the makers added that these two were meant for big screen viewing.
The report quoting Shibasish Sarkar, group CEO, Reliance Entertainment, said: “Sooryavanshi and 83 have been made for the big-screen experience. We are hoping theatres will open [in the near future], and we will be able to release our films. For now, we are willing to wait for four to six months [before considering an alternate course of action].”
He did acknowledge that holding back a film for that long poses a financial risk. “We are taking a risk in terms of our equity and return. But we believe in our films and want to see them on the big screen. Also, theatres are an important part of the entertainment eco-system.”
The move was welcomed by theatre owners. Manoj Desai, executive director of Gaiety-Galaxy was happy to hear this and was quoted in the report as saying, “Almost 50 per cent of my losses will be recovered if Sooryavanshi is the first release after the lockdown is lifted. If such films consider [a direct-to-web release], I will have to down the shutters of my theatres.”
With uncertainly over when and how the Covid-19 will end, many producers are seriously considering an OTT release for their films. Tamil actor Suriya has reportedly decided to take his wife Jyothika’s upcoming film Pon Magal Vandhal directly to the web. It will have a direct OTT release in the first week of May on Amazon Prime. However, move didn’t go down well with theatre owners in Tamil Nadu.
Paneer Selvan, general secretary of Tamil Nadu Theatre and Multiplex Owners Associations said in a statement, “We are shocked to learn about the plan to directly release Pon Magal Vandhal on OTT platform. A film that’s made for cinemas should primarily have a theatrical release first and then release on other platforms. We reached out to the makers and requested them to revoke the plan but they didn’t listen. Therefore, we’ve decided to not release any films from their banner in theatres in future.”
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