Saturday, March 28, 2020


The grim scenario in the face of the coronavirus outbreak continues the world over. And the film industry in India is no exception. Uncertainty is the catchword as far as the release position of forthcoming films is concerned. And this, not just because one doesn’t know when things will be normal once again.
Even if it is assumed that normalcy returns after mid-April till which time the country is in lockdown mode, it is not necessary that film releases will start forthwith thereafter. Several factors will decide whether films will start releasing as soon as the cinemas reopen. For one, the release position would depend upon how the country is able to fight the epidemic. If the fear in public minds persists even after things limp back to normalcy, producers of big-budget films may not be in a mood to get their films to the cinemas immediately. A film like Sooryavanshi is expected to take a phenomenal initial and the film’s producers and distributors will not risk that at any cost. For, based on the fear factor, members of the public would want to decide whether they would frequent public places like cinemas forthwith or after the passage of some days/weeks. Also, if cinemas in India do what the cinemas of China are doing after they reopened this week, it would be suicidal for producers of big-ticket entertainers like Sooryavanshi and Radhe to plan their release soon after public places are allowed to reopen. In China, tickets are being issued not for consecutive seat numbers but after keeping two or three adjacent seats vacant for every seat ticket sold so that the audience maintains some sort of social distancing. Since big-budgeted and big star cast films are made with the belief that they will open huge, it would be catastrophic for them to be released with 25% or 33% occupancy only.
While Sooryavanshi is ready for release, films like Radhe and Laxmmi Bomb are still incomplete and will take time to come to the cinemas. A bit of shooting remains to be done to complete Radhe. The post-production work of Laxmmi Bomb is also incomplete. One doubts if the two Eid-scheduled releases will be able to keep their date with the audiences.

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