1 min read.Updated: 08 Jul 2021, 10:22 AM ISTLata Jha
Digital has emerged stronger than ever before during the pandemic and is unlikely to go away any time soon, despite theatre owners urging filmmakers to release films for big screens to help in the recovery of the industry
NEW DELHI: Hindi language horror comedy Bhoot Police will premiere on Disney+ Hotstar, as it skips the wait for theatres to reopen across the country. The film has been directed by Pavan Kirpalani and stars Saif Ali Khan, Arjun Kapoor, Jacqueline Fernandez, Yami Gautam and Javed Jaffrey in the lead roles. Disney is yet to announce the date of streaming.
Though trade experts say the resumption of Bollywood films in theatres will gradually mean an end to the aggressive turn video streaming platforms had taken to acquire films for direct digital premieres, some producers are likely to take the OTT route for finished projects that may not find adequate showcasing in the near future. Netflix also acquired titles such as Kartik Aaryan’s Dhamaka and Taapsee Pannu’s Haseen Dilruba, whichstarted streaming last week, besides having premiered Parineeti Chopra-starrer The Girl On The Train earlier this year. Meanwhile, Amazon Prime Video has picked up Farhan Akhtar’s sports drama Toofan and Fahadh Faasil’s Malayalam language film Malik.
Trade analysts and entertainment industry experts said digital has emerged stronger than ever before during the pandemic and is unlikely to go away any time soon, despite theatre owners urging filmmakers to release films for big screens to help in the recovery of the industry.
The economics also make sense. For second-rung stars, producers may not see sense in spending an additional Rs8-10 crore for publicity and advertising on a film made on a budget of Rs15 crore when a streaming platform is ready to cough up around Rs20 crore with no distribution or marketing costs. It helps to keep the business cycle going when a production house has bigger films in the pipeline that it has to fund, trade experts say.