Akshay Kumar starrer Sooryavanshi has been grabbing headlines ever since the film’s release date’s unofficial announcement. It is now scheduled to release on April 2. Yesterday, we told you that the makers have asked for 70% revenue share from the multiplexers along with the shortening of the OTT window from 8 weeks to 4 weeks. But, now the makers have yet another demand.
For the unversed, the producers used to get a 50% share during the pre-COVID era arrangement. But, now it looks like the new demand has not gone down well with the exhibitors. Read on to understand what the makers demanded and the reaction of the exhibitors to the same.
According to reports in Bollywood Hungama, the exhibition sector hasn’t agreed to these conditions yet. According to them, the revenue-sharing model is not financially feasible for the theatres. Many theatre owners also fear that if films arrive on digital in just 4 weeks, it can reduce footfalls. But with Tamil blockbuster Master (2021) arriving on Amazon Prime in 16 days, a precedent has already been set. So does this mean Sooryavanshi will be in a profitable situation?
When the exhibitors were asked about the demand of shortening OTT window for Akshay Kumar starrer Sooryavanshi, Raj Bansal, the Entertainment Paradise owner in Jaipur, said, “(OTT window) 8 weeks ka hi rehna chahiye. Anything less than that is being unfair with the exhibitors and distributors. For a small film, a four-week window between theatrical and digital is okay. But big-budget films do run for 6 to 8 weeks and to release them within 4 weeks is absolutely unjustified. If I come to know that I can watch a particular film online after a couple of weeks, I’ll try to avoid going to the theatres. It’ll majorly hamper our business.”
Akshaye Rathi, film exhibitor and distributor further said, “There should be a degree of flexibility. Ideally, it should be a minimum of 4 weeks to start with. It’s not completely normal yet and it’s important that producers and exhibitors watch each other’s backs rather than just look at their individual interests.”
He further added, “We’d love it if the producers give us a chance to optimally perform with the business of Sooryavanshi and god forbid if it underperforms, then I think it’s only right that the producers to expect exhibitors to allow them to release on OTT earlier than the normal old-school window of 8 weeks. So that sort of flexibility and give-and-take is important, at least for a couple of months or for the first few big-ticket Hindi film releases that come out.”