South Indian industry seeking to produce multilingual movies
As cinema halls and multiplexes have started reopening across the country after seven months of lockdown, the South Indian film industry is preparing to release a number of big-budget multilingual movies to draw audiences to the theatres.
These films will be made on budgets of over Rs 200 crore each and in a number of languages, ranging from Tamil and Telugu to Hindi. Furthermore, these big-budget films will cast a mix of both Bollywood and South Indian actors in a bid to grab the attention of the audience from various states.
In the South Indian industry, Baahubali director SS Rajamouli is working on his upcoming film RRR starring Alia Bhatt, Ajay Devgn, Jr NTR and Ram Charan. Furthermore, Deepika Padukone, Amitabh Bachchan and Prabhas are coming together for a film produced by Telugu production house Vyjayanthi Movies. The second chapter of the KFG franchise, starring Kannada actor Yash is also in the making, featuring Bollywood stars Sanjay Dutt and Raveena Tandon.
Speaking to media, film trade analyst Girish Johar said that Southern filmmakers and studios are experimenting with the idea of bringing a leading North Indian actor into their cast and releasing the film in multiple language for greater audience reach. One fine example of this experiment is Akshay Kumar and Rajinikanth starrer 2.0. A multi-language case tends to expand the market for a film, adding more value to its revenue prospects.
As per a recent survey conducted by LocalCircles, only 7 percent of Indian citizens are willing to go to cinema halls in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Theatre owners are facing a critical task in convincing the citizens that cinema halls are safe and COVID-fair for a movie-watching experience.
At the same time, a number of producers are either releasing their big-budget films on OTT video-streaming platforms or postposning their releases to next year amid the uncertainty around the box-office collection due to the pandemic restrictions.
Festivals like Diwali and Christmas have provided some of the best occasions for the film industry to schedule their big-budget releases. However, taking note of COVID-19 precautions and limited seating in cinema halls, Bollywood producers are rethinking their strategies to make profits on their movies. Therefore, it appears that it will take a while for new content to return on the Indian cinema halls. Significantly, the release of two upcoming big-banner Bollywood movies “83″ and “Sooryavanshi” have also been postponed to Christmas and next year respectively.
Amid this development, cinema owners are forced to screen previous releases such as TapseePannu starrer “Thappad”, Ajay Devgn’s “Tanhaji”, and Keanu Reeves’ “John Wick 3″ among others.