Film production and distribution studio Viacom18 Motion Pictures announced the launch of its digital content brand Tipping Point on Wednesday. Tipping Point will be creating web series, short films and non-traditional formats with unconventional narratives for the digital platforms.
“Having conquered the big screen through unconventional narratives, it is time for Viacom18 Motion Pictures to make its mark in the rapidly emerging digital content space," said Ajit Andhare, chief operating officer, Viacom18 Motion Pictures, in a statement. “Tipping Point - our digital content brand will appeal to consumers looking for edgy, contemporary, provocative yet relatable content typically missing in the traditional or mainstream media. Through Tipping Point, Viacom18 Motion Pictures will evolve from being a film studio into a holistic content studio, reaching beyond theatrical offerings into millions of screens on mobile and personal devices with its unique storytelling," he added.
First to be included among Tipping Point’s offerings is a web series called X Ray – Selected Satyajit Shorts. This is a 12-part series directed by filmmaker Srijit Mukherji known for films like Begum Jaan, Rajkahini and Yeti Obhijaan. The company is also working on an untitled crime thriller created by Imtiaz Ali and Jamtara, the story of a small district in Jharkhand, known to be India’s phishing capital, directed by Soumendra Padhi of Budhia Singh-Born to Run fame. It is also making Best Days, a psychological thriller by Abhishek Sengupta of web-series Lakhon Mein Ek fame.
To be sure, Tipping Point will have to compete with content creators feeding a cluttered OTT (over-the-top video streaming) market in India. Streaming services have flooded the Indian market over the past two years with around 30 players vying for audiences’ attention. These include both American services like Amazon Prime Video and Netflix as well as a host of local platforms like Balaji Telefilms’ ALTBalaji and those owned by broadcast networks like Star India’s Hotstar and Sony Entertainment Television’s SonyLIV. Viacom owned digital platform VOOT is also a part of the OTT stable.
According to the Ficci-EY media and entertainment industry report 2017, about 250 million people viewed videos online in 2017 and these numbers are expected to double to 500 million by 2020. Around 40% of total mobile traffic came from the consumption of video services in 2015 and this figure is expected to touch 72% by 2020