Sooryavanshi has been postponed. The Akshay Kumar–Katrina Kaif starrer cop motion drama, which was supposed to be Bollywood’s first mega launch of the 12 months on April 30, has been pushed, with no new launch date introduced. The purpose, after all, is the present Covid state of affairs in Maharashtra.
The buzz is the manufacturing homes backing the movie — Reliance Entertainment, Dharma Productions, Rohit Shetty Picturez and Cape of Good Films — have been by no means eager on placing up “Sooryavanshi”, an extravagant Rohit Shetty entertainer, for a direct-to-OTT launch. According to sources, the makers at the moment are assessing the state of affairs. They will make a proper announcement round April 10 in the event that they plan to drop the movie straight on OTT no matter whether or not it will get a theatrical launch.
“Team Sooryavanshi postpones the release of the film. The Honorable Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Mr. Uddhav Thackeray had a discussion with director Rohit Shetty yesterday. In the meeting, Mr. Uddhav Thackeray appreciated Rohit Shetty as he took the brave and difficult decision of postponing Sooryavanshi owing to the current COVID situation in the state,” an announcement issued by the makers of tye movie on Monday night reads.
While Bollywood is in a tizzy over the present shutdown of cinema enterprise in Maharashtra, probably the most essential markets for Hindi movies, the destiny of “Sooryavanshi” might have ramifications on movie commerce developments far past simply the movie. Being probably the most essential Bollywood biggies of the 12 months, the choice whether or not such an enormous movie goes straight to OTT might set the course for different movies so far as future exhibition developments go (no less than for now), in an business that’s fast to adapt herd mentality.
When cinemas opened up after final 12 months’s lockdown, Bollywood was fast to announce a wealthy line-up of movies, starting March this 12 months proper up to the yearend. “Mumbai Saga”, among the many first huge industrial movies to launch in cinemas, fared beneath expectations, what with the general public sustaining a cautious stance about visiting theatres. Still, the large movies of huge banners have been undeterred and insisted they might go forward with launch.
Among the most-hyped movies whose launch dates have been confirmed over the following months have been the Ranveer Singh-starrer cricket drama “83”, Salman Khan‘s Eid 2021 launch “Radhe”, Akshay Kumar’s “Bell Bottom” and “Prithviraj”, the Ayushmann Khurrana-starrer “Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui” and the interval drama “Shamshera” starring Ranbir Kapoor and Sanjay Dutt.
While no announcement has been made on any of the above movies but, launch of the primary lot of movies, which have been to open over the following few weeks, was already postponed even earlier than the Maharashtra authorities formally determined to shut down halls owing to the second wave of Covid. These embody the Amitabh Bachchan-Emraan Hashmi starrer “Chehre”, the Rani Mukerji-Saif Ali Khan starrer “Bunty Aur Babli 2” and Rana Daggubati’s “Haathi Mere Saathi”.
Now, rumours abound that makers of many of those movies are weighing the choice of direct-to-OTT launch and that negotiations is likely to be on with digital platforms.
The movie commerce, nonetheless, would favor to keep optimistic at this level. Most commerce consultants would fairly take a wait-and-watch stance.
“These are speculations, we need to wait for the official announcements. The theatres have shut down so people tend to believe that big films will release on OTT. But let’s not speculate. These filmmakers might postpone and release in the theatres,” commerce analyst Taran Adarsh tells IANS.
Filmmaker Atul Mohan feels the state of affairs proper now could be positively unsure.
“We might have official announcements in a few days. Whenever a project is delayed, 10 to 15 per cent of the budget is lost. You need to restructure the schedules, get dates. Plus, you have to pay interest on the budget. For a 100-crore film, 15 to 20 crore worth interest is charged in a year,” he says.
Mohan provides: “Theatres have been shut in Maharashtra and these account for more than 40 per cent of box office collections. It’s a huge market and cannot be ignored.”
Film commerce consultants are unanimous in agreeing that, due to Covid, the movie business’s financial struggling has solely been worsening over the months because the first lockdown in March final 12 months.
“In 2019, we made a profit of Rs 4,400 crore, but last year, in three months, we made only Rs 600 crore, and this year, we have made only Rs 55 crore. The profit was going up but now most of it has been lost. We lost Rs 3,500-4,000 crore in 2020. I don’t see movies making this kind of money in the near future,” says Mohan.