Many multiplex operators like INOX and PVR have confirmed the release of Sooryavanshi and 83 The Biopic in theatres.
On Twitter, both INOX and PVR asked movie-goers to mark their calendars for the release of the two movies. While Akshay Kumar's Sooryavanshi will release on Diwali, Ranveer Singh-starrer 83 The Biopic is set for a Christmas release.
The development comes after Unlock 2 guidelines were announced by Ministry of Home Affairs. Dates for re-starting may be decided separately, the MHA order said.
The announcement comes at a time when star-studded ventures like Laxmmi Bomb and Sadak 2 are releasing on an OTT platform directly.
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According to film trade analyst Komal Nahta, the announcement of the release date does mean much for several reasons.
He pointed out that while the release dates of these two big movies are confirmed, there seem to be no signs of theatres reopening anytime soon.
"The exhibition sector must have got the jitters and in a bid to show its strength, it must have sought the support of the producers if the two big films, who so far have maintained that the films are big-screen entertainment and they would wait for normalcy to return rather than premiering them on any OTT platform," said Nahta.
He added that the announcement is coming from multiplex chains and not from producers of the two films.
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Nahta also raised concerns over reluctance of people coming back to theatres whenever they reopen. He said that if cinephiles do not come in large numbers to theatres even during Diwali, then the release dates of the films may change again.
Also, staggered opening of theatres is what industry players are expecting to happen in India.
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The uncertainty around theatres reopening in India continues due to the increasing number of coronavirus cases in the country.
The scenario is no different in international markets especially US where big films like Christopher Nolan’s Tenet and Disney’s Mulan have rescheduled the release dates once again.
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So, instead of July 31, Tenet has been pushed to August 12. Mulan is likely to release on August 21 instead of July 24 and this is the third time Disney has moved Mulan’s release date.
According to experts, Bollywood has lost around Rs 1,000 crore in the first six months of 2020 due to shutdown of theatres.
For theatres and movie industry in times of COVID-19, it is more about survival than revival.
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