The decision by film producers and distributors — to release films in single screens and independent multiplexes — has come as a big surprise. Everyone was hoping that the final discussions with multiplexes on Tuesday would end on a positive note, with the stalemate coming to an end. But…
Okay, now let’s look forward. The producers and distributors are going to announce the release schedule of forthcoming films in the next 10 days and hopefully, by May last week or June first week, the flow of releases should begin again, at single screens and independent multiplexes only. Most of us have cultivated a habit of visiting the nearest multiplex to catch a movie, over the years. In metros especially, a lot of us have actually lost the habit of visiting a single screen.
The question is, will we rush to catch the film at a single screen with equal fervour? I feel, most of us will visit only those single screens where the A.C. is functioning well, the sound system is perfect, the projection quality is impeccable, the overall environment is hygienic and yes, the crowd that visits the theatre is classy. For the producers — those involved in 30, 40, 50 and 60 + crore mega-ventures — the decision to release the film at single screens is going to be tough.
You can’t shut your eyes to the fact that multiplexes contribute enormously to the booty and given the current stalemate, these makers would’ve to rely on single screens to recoup their investment. But the worst hit would be multiplexes. The fixed expenditure — monthly rents, monthly wages, electricity bills, maintenance costs — will have to be paid, whether or not films play at their property. How will they manage the show if they are boycotted? Here’s a humble request. Let’s set our elephantine egos aside and come to a consensus asap.