Curtains raise again as ticket cost goes up a tad
With their strike coming to an end, theatre owners are now prepping for introducing new ticket prices across the State
With their strike coming to an end, theatre owners are now prepping for introducing new ticket prices across the State. “We’re relieved. The GST alone has made the ticket prices more, and so, in order to make it affordable for our customers, we’ve reduced the prices,” says Nikilesh Surya, the owner of Rohini theatres.
“A Rs 120 ticket would cost Rs 153.60 after GST, but we are pricing it at Rs 101, so the final price is only Rs 130 after GST. Though the customers will have to pay Rs 10 more compared to previous rates, I hope they will understand that we are getting lesser than what we used to earn. Our State has relatively high theatre occupancy, and we want to retain that,” he added. It is not clear if other theatres too will reduce the price accordingly.
Film producer G Dhananjayan is ecstatic over the ban being lifted. His film, Ivan Thanthiran, despite opening to positive reviews, only saw a three-day run at the theatres. The film will now be re-released, along with Vanamagan. “We’re very happy. People have understood that the film struggled because of the strike and are looking forward to watching it on the big screens.
We’ve commenced the promotions once again. Television promos are up and running. We’re doing everything possible to bring back the film’s hype.” With no new Tamil releases planned on Friday, Ivan Thanthiran and Vanamagan will be the only Tamil films that will try to cash in on the weekend. Other language releases, including Sridevi-starrer Mom, and Spider-Man: Homecoming will release as per their original schedule.
Not all producers are as thrilled as Dhananjayan. Much like Ivan Thanthiran, Yaanum Theeyavan too hit the screens on 30 June and was limited to a three-day run. But the film isn’t scheduled for a re-release. “We’re not getting theatres our’s is a small-budget film without attractive names in the cast,” says Ashwin Jerome, who starred in the lead role apart from also producing it.
“Yaanum Theeyavan is a product of three years of hard work with predominantly new technicians who are mostly in their early 20s. The irony is, the film ran for only three days and the theatre occupancy increased from 60 per cent to almost 90 per cent on day three. If it had a bad run, we wouldn’t have worried about trying to re-release it. But theatre owners are opting for bigger films and have left us hanging,” he added.
The actor also says that he faced similar issues with the film’s release due to the GST announcement.
“Only three movies were supposed to come out on our release date. Two weeks prior to the release, we got 150 screens. When GST hit us, I got a call stating that we will only have 15-20 theatres across Tamil Nadu as the number of films releasing on that day had increased to 11. After all these struggles, we’re now back to square one,” says the actor.
Meanwhile, the Tamil Film Producers Council has released an official statement thanking the government, the various bodies of Tamil cinema, and the theatre owners across the State for being a part of the four-day strike.