Good news Bollywood buffs, we finally have something to sing and dance about! The standoff between multiplexes and Bollywood production houses came to an end earlier today as the two parties reached a consensus over the rationalization of profit sharing for forthcoming films following a marathon meeting between the exhibitors and producers. The President of Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association (IMPPA) Mukesh Bhatt has confirmed the news.
According to sources, the issue was resolved after a 12-hour long meeting between the two parties at Yashraj Studios. Producers and distributors were demanding a fair share of 50% at box office revenues but multiplex owners disagreed. Up till now the ratio was 40:60 in favour of owners. Producers have held back film releases since April 4th because of differences over profit-sharing between film producers and multiplex owners. (Remember even Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan got into the act asking for Fair Rights for Friday Nights?) The deadlock has resulted in losses worth over rs200 crore (thats 2 billion rupees) for producers, distributors as well as multiplexes. The producers all this while were demanding equal share in the ticket sales.
Now multiplex owners have agreed to the producers’ demand of profit sharing for the first week a movie runs in the theatres, which means starting today film buffs can get back to their movie popcorn diet!
The terms that have been amicably agreed upon by all national multiplex chains are: 50:50 (producers:multiplexes) and 42:58, 35:65 and 30:70 for the first four weeks respectively for all films.Producers and distributors will retain the right to chose and release the film as per its content. Entertainment tax will not be charged where it is not applicable.
There is also a rider. “In case a film grosses Rs. 175 million or above at the top six multiplex chains in the first week, the terms would then be 52:48 in favour of (producers:multiplexes), 45:55, 38:62 and 30:70 respectively for the first four weeks,” says Reliance Entertainment chairman Amit Khanna, who had been spearheading the truce march on behalf of the multiplexes. With regards to distribution, another hot area of dispute, multiplexes have agreed that the release plan in theatres would be decided by the producers.
Now film producers will have to streamline supply and avoid the clutter of film releases which had halted since 4 April. Hitting the cinema halls today are Star Trek, Maruti Mera Dost also Jackie Chan’s film Shinjuku Incident. Big budgeted films like Sajid Nadiadwala’s “Kambhakth Ishq”, Yash Chopra’s “New York”, Vashu Bhagnani’s “Kal Kisne Dekha Hai,” Subhash Ghai’s “Paying Guest” were among the films whose release was delayed. Now that the strike has been called off, the first film that will release in all multiplexes will be Vashu Bhagnani’s (aptly titled*) “Kal Kisne Dekha.”
*Who knows what tomorrow brings?