Badla director Sujoy Ghosh believes in the power of cinema and watching films on the big screen, but believes it is time to co-exist with OTT platforms due to disruption in showbiz caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
“I don’t think COVID has anything to do with films or OTT. I remember during my growing up years, we used to have libraries in the neighbourhood which had a lot of books. You needed to get a subscription and read a book of your choice. But it never stopped you from buying a book,” Ghosh said while talking about the current scenario of people sitting at home.
“I personally believe in cinema and have grown up watching cinema. I would love to go a theatre and as community people, we would always enjoy going out there and watching cinema. We have to support them to a certain extent. Having said that, I also don’t know how easy it’s for me to say wait and hold on to your film and what is the cost of the film. I watch my daughter and son and they are very used to watching their things on their laptops. I don’t know where it is heading but it can co-exist. OTT will get a certain amount of loyalty,” he added.
Ghosh expressed his views on Naik Naik & Company’s second web series with the theme “Exploring New Avenues – OTT The Game Changer”. The episode went live on Saturday on Naik Naik & Company’s Facebook page.
Talking about the COVID-19 pandemic effect on the industry, filmmaker Mukesh Bhatt said: “Challenging times are the best times. You are put in a situation like this which is far beyond your own capacity to control.”
“I feel this is a great time for all of us to come out of this with something more innovative or creative and this is going to be fodder for years to come. Nothing stops me from making whatever I want to make and it will be lapped up because there’s a great audience who wants to see stories which are different and path-breaking and create a stir in the human heart but pitches to so-called non-viable theatre audiences where people want to enjoy. It’s like an IPL match – just enjoy the ambience, clap and whistle. There are two different audiences coming for two different purposes of entertainment,” Mukesh shared.
Shedding light on the movie theatre scenario, Raj Nayak said: “I personally think cinema halls are not going to open before October. It’s my view, looking at the scenario in major cities – Mumbai and Delhi in particular. The other way of looking at it is also that it’s a good time for content creators because OTT has democratised distribution. So, anybody who actually has got a good story, gets a platform which probably in the earlier days one wasn’t able to get. You cannot blame somebody for going directly to OTT. Big movies with big stars will have a challenge because only going to OTT or satellite will not help them to recover the money. So that’s going to be a challenge.”