PVR INOX ready to start screening Malayalam films; FEFKA asks them to compensate losses incurred - Hindustan Times

PVR INOX ready to start screening Malayalam films; FEFKA asks them to compensate losses incurred

Apr 14, 2024 08:11 AM IST

The issue between PVR INOX and the Malayalam film industry seems to have been resolved after the Film Employees Federation of Kerala took a stand.

The Malayalam film industry was in for a rude shock recently when multiplex giant PVR INOX pulled out Malayalam films from screens nationwide. Even film industries like Telugu, who bought dubbing rights to Malayalam films incurred losses when the films were suddenly pulled out. The Film Employees Federation of Kerala (FEFKA) was in no mood to give in but it looks like a resolution has been reached. (Also Read: PVR INOX's feud with Mollywood explained. Here's why releases of Malayalam films have been stalled across country)

Stills of latest Malayalam releases Aadujeevitham and Varshangalkku Shesham.
Stills of latest Malayalam releases Aadujeevitham and Varshangalkku Shesham.

PVR INOX says ‘issue resolved’

A statement re-tweeted by Kamal Gianchandani, CEO of PVR Pictures Limited, on Saturday evening states that the multiplex chain is ready to screen Malayalam films from Vishu (April 14), after stopping screening of films in the language on Eid (April 11). The statement shared by industry tracker Sreedhar Pillai reads, “#PVRINOX vs Kerala Film Producers Association issue over #VPF resolved! #PVRINOX Will start advance booking in all their properties for new and earlier released #Malayalam films with immediate effect. Probably from late tonight or tomorrow- #Vishu day!”

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FEFKA takes a stand and demands compensation

FEFKA took a stand earlier on Saturday, stating at a press meet that no Malayalam film will be given to any PVR INOX-owned screen till producers are compensated for the loss suffered in the last few days. Unnikrishnan B, general secretary of FEFKA announced this at a press conference where Aadujeevitham director Blessy and Varshangalkku Shesham director Vineeth Sreenivasan were also present, according to PTI.

Unnikrishnan claimed that the dispute between PVR INOX and the Kerala Film Producers Association (KFPA) arose regarding the virtual print fee (VPF) charged by the multiplex. The KFPA recently launched their own service called Producers’ Digital Content (PDC), unhappy with the steep cost charged by QUBE and UFO. A few days ago in a statement, Kamal shared that it was ‘illegal’ for the KFPA to ask them to stream movies through PDC alone, which made them take a stand.

“As a countermeasure, PVR, with a cartel-like strategy, decided not to show any Malayalam film on any of the theatres or screens owned by them across India. This has caused a significant financial loss as well as mental pressure to producers, including Blessy,” said Unnikrishnan. He also claimed that the multiplex chain doesn’t have the ‘courage’ to take a stand in other south Indian states and was taking ‘unfair advantage’ of them.

“It is not just a question of the problems of the film producers, it is also a question of the pride of Malayalam cinema and Malayalees as a whole. Therefore, we have decided that unless the producers are compensated for the loss they have suffered for the number of days their films were not shown, no Malayalam cinema would be given to any PVR theatre or screen anywhere. The producers' association have also assured us of their support," Unnikrishnan said. Vineeth said that this issue affects all artists working in the Malayalam film industry, not just the producers.

Mollywood is on a streak

Mollywood has been doing particularly well this year, with recent releases all being received well. Films like Nalsen and Mamitha Baiju’s Premalu, Mammootty’s Bramayugam, Soubin Shahir and Sreenath Bhasi’s Manjummel Boys and Prithviraj Sukumaran’s Aadujeevitham - The Goat Life released in close succession and received good reviews not just in Kerala but other states also. Fahadh Faasil’s Aavesham, Vineeth’s Varshangalkku Shesham and Unni Mukundan’s Jai Ganesh were released this week.

With inputs from PTI

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