Multiplex deadlock continues

In what has now come to be called another ‘family feud’, all leading multiplex owners and exhibitors met on Tuesday at Andheri. Serena Menon reports.

india Updated: Mar 18, 2009 02:12 IST
Serena Menon
Serena Menon
Hindustan Times

In what has now come to be called another ‘family feud’, all leading multiplex owners and exhibitors met on Tuesday at Andheri, to make their stance clear in response to the alleged statements made by the producers’ distributor forum on Monday. The two associations had a disagreement on terms of revenue sharing and have threatened to not release any films after April 4, if their demands were not addressed fairly.

Representatives present from the association included — Chief Operating Officer of BIG Cinemas Tushar Dhingra, Managing Director, Fame India Limited, Shravan Shroff, COO, Inox Leisure Limited, Alok Tandon, Chairman Cinemax, Rashesh Kanakia, COO, Fun Cinemas Vishal Kapur and MD Movietime Cineplex Lalit Kapur.

The multiplex owners defended themselves retorting to all the allegations keeping their logic concentrated at ‘performance-based sharing of revenue’. “Whatever we make, we share, but if we don’t make any, then we can’t share much. How can we pay them 50 per cent on a film like Chandni Chowk…, shows for which went empty after Friday? We are talking about setting the revenue on the basis of the performance of the film,” said Alok Tandon.

Positive about reaching a conclusion before April 4, the multiplex owners didn’t think it was necessary to even calculate the losses they would incur if no films released after April 4, though the need for an arbitrator was something they pondered upon. “We are sure that we will reach a middle point very soon. There is no premium to talent popularity is what we are saying. But they must understand that we too have increased the percentage from 42 to 48 in absolute numbers, in one year,” said Tushar Dhingra.

The breakdown of their profits was announced as 70 to 75 per cent at the box office, 20 per cent concessions, and five to 10 per cent from advertising dependent entirely on what the location is. The producers are currently asking for a standard 50 per cent sharing at the profit made from the sale of tickets.

Another worry is now the strike by the Tamil producers who are asking for a 60 per cent in the ticket sale, and have threatened not to release any films after March 28. “We have only heard of it, like you have. Talks are on with them as well,” said Tandon.

First Published: Mar 18, 2009 02:10 IST