The multiplex chain INOX expressed its displeasure and disappointment over the news of Amazon Prime Video announcing the global premiere of Shoojit Sircar’s quirky drama Gulabo Sitabo on June 12. Expressing their disappointment, The Producers Guild of India hit right back at sections of the exhibitors who aren’t very happy with this move. Now after INOX, PVR Pictures has also issued a statement and expressed its concern over the decision.
While INOX urged other producers not to follow this trend and stay with the old pattern, the CEO of PVR Pictures also said they were expecting the producers to hold their films for theatrical release, before going digital. Not just Gulabo Sitabo, but Vidya Balan’s Shakuntala Devi have also been slated to release on Amazon Prime Video. Following this news, PVR issued a statement to address the situation.
The CEO of PVR pictures, Kamal Gianchandani said in his statement – “As PVR we believe that the theatrical release is the best way for audiences to experience the labor and creative genius of our filmmakers. This has been so for decades and not just in India but globally. The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has caused an unfortunate shutdown of cinemas. We are confident, once we get to the other side of this crisis, there would be enough and more pent up demand from cine-goers who have been cooped up at homes for the last many weeks. We are likely to see demand by force on a sustained basis, once we reopen. Needless to say, we are disappointed with some of our Producers deciding to go straight to the streaming platform/s. We were hoping that the Producers would accede to our request to hold back their film’s release till cinemas reopen”.
Statement from Producers Guild of India pic.twitter.com/WCeX3zMlsh
— producersguildindia (@producers_guild) May 15, 2020
PVR CEO added – “That said, this is not the first time films are being premiered on a streaming platform/s. Cinema exhibition has regularly faced competition from new emerging distribution platforms over the last many years, and it has continued to enjoy cine-goers patronage and affinity. I would also like to use this opportunity to express our appreciation for all the producers who have publicly voiced their support for the theatrical platform and have decided to reschedule their releases to accommodate the reopening of cinemas”.
It would be interesting to see how the multiplex chains will react when other Bollywood films make their way directly to the digital platforms.
What do you have to say about the debate amidst INOX, PVR, Guild and filmmakers? Let us know in the comments section below.