On the evening of 7th June 1997, a revolutionary plan came into existence when PVR decided to open the country’s first-ever multiplex in Saket, Delhi. Known as PVR Anupam, it was the first theatre to display 4 movies at a time. All you gen-z kids, believe it or not, it was kind of a big deal to see multiple screens in a single place. With the release of Akshay Kumar’s Bell Bottom in theatres, let’s analyse how this could be a starting point for another such revolution.
Why did we choose to start with the transitional episode of single-screen theatres into multiplex? Because that totally changed the movie-watching experience of a normal moviegoer. We’re going through a similar phase when a different kind of ‘movie watching’ experience was kind of forced on every one of us since the infamous pandemic started back in March 2020.
Yup, many of you must’ve already guessed we’re hinting at the very over-the-top discussed topic ‘OTT VS Theatres’. Cinema halls have always been the first choice for moviegoers since their existence. There have been variations in cinema halls, like the one mentioned above i.e. single screens VS multiplex, but still, viewers have preferred to watch their favourite stars in the ’70 mm film’ format.
The last two years have emerged as a boon and bane for many surviving in a booming industry which is frozen for many months now. Many filmmakers bravely took the OTT route with their films, while many are still waiting for theatres to come back to life.
The real discussion here is, movies that aren’t very high on the budget but present impeccable content have done well on OTT as well. Some examples being Anurag Basu’s Ludo, Suriya’s Soorarai Pottru, Sidharth Malhotra’s Shershaah, Fahadh Faasil’s Joji, Kriti Sanon, Pankaj Tripathi’s Mimi & many more. When everything goes back to normal, will the audience accept such films in cinema halls? Has the ‘OTT’ conveniently entered into our lives & will we find it hard to visit a cinema hall for a film that has a watchable experience while you laze on your couch?
Recent films like Thappad, Andhadhun, Article 15, Badla, Dream Girl, Bala, Badhaai Ho proved how the ‘changing phase’ of content-driven films is here to stay backed by some solid box office numbers. But, has OTT being able to convert its ‘special appearance’ to your life into a ‘strong supporting character’?
Movies like RRR, KGF: Chapter 3, Sooryavanshi, Brahmastra will definitely attract their audience to the theatres because of the experience they’ll offer. But what about films like Hungama 2 and this week’s release Chehre or any upcoming films in the zone of Queen, Tanu Weds Manu Returns or even NH10, Badlapur, Vicky Donor?
We’ll leave a poll for you all you moviegoers below and it’s really important to know has OTT brought a behavioural change or it’s just many of us assuming things. You tell us, would you still go to theatres if you get to watch the same film from the comfort of your couch? Feel free to shoot your thoughts in the comments section below.