Producer Vikram Malhotra has simply launched his much-hyped new movie, the Vidya Balan-starrer Shakuntala Devi on OTT, however he takes a realistic strategy and says skipping theatrical launch is only a situational resolution and not at all is the theatrical expertise going to change into irrelevant.
“The practice of consuming films and shows on digital platforms is not a new phenomenon. In the western world, it has been happening over the last 10 years. In India, too, a potential market has grown in the last five years. Yes, in the last three months, there have been films releasing directly on the OTT platforms for the obvious reason of global pandemic. But I see no reason to looking at it as a shift from theatrical release to OTT,” Malhotra advised IANS.
“It is not that theatrical releases will become irrelevant once normalcy returns. It is a temporary phase because content has to reach the audience,” he added.
Citing the instance of “Shakuntala Devi”, he defined: “This film was slated to release in June. But we can see the unprecedented situation that the world is going through. During the lockdown, OTT is the widest platform of distribution of a film. As makers, we are utilising that. If we make a film for a theatrical release, we have a very good reason to release it theatrically.”
“Shakuntala Devi” is directed by Anu Menon and it additionally options Jisshu Sengupta, Sanya Malhotra and Amit Sadh. The movie launched on Amazon Prime Video on July 31.
The movies launched to this point on OTT have all been small to medium-budget fare. Would digital launch of a big-budget movie assure as huge a set because the movie in query may see on the theatrical box-office?
Malhotra replied: “I will explain how it works. There are different revenue models for the two platforms (theatre and OTT). The structures are different. When you release a film in the theatre, your fortune swings from zero to a hundred. A film goes from a deep loss to a great profit (financially) for a set of reasons. So the risk-reward ratio is very high. Earning profit for a film on the streaming platform after its release is different because the business model is different. So I refrain from the comparison.”
“In future, when we take a call on what kind of risk and reward we are looking at from a film, we will map our audience. Based on whether a story is for individual viewing or collective viewing, we will decide whether to release the film on OTT or in the theatre,” defined the founding father of Abundantia Entertainment.
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