KOCHI: Even as the Malayalam film industry resumes shooting in a week, theatrical releases have been deferred indefinitely, disrupting show business.
While several medium and small budget filmmakers have decided to launch their ventures on OTT platforms, bigger films are in no state of mind to take the step, lest the producers fail to recover the humungous cost.
Coming to the aid of new releases is Panchami Medient Private Ltd, a 20-year-old venture from Kochi that has made a name for itself in the south Indian entertainment industry. The enterprise has launched a unique digital branding content initiative that facilitates direct-to-digital movie releases.
“We started as a video library engaged in the distribution of video cassettes and CDs, and were the distributors of the likes of Warner Brothers and 20th Century Fox. As cassettes and CDs died a slow death, we shifted to the business of the cable TV network. As time progressed, we began to develop business associations with Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, MX Player, Etisalat, One-Take Media, Kerala Vision, Asianet Cable Vision, Den Network and others as their video content partner. This made us consider facilitating releases on OTT platforms and cable TV,” said Sibu S, managing director.
New Malayalam films are telecast via cable TV through multi-system operators(MSO) in a manner that producers get maximum revenue collection.
Once the censor certificate is awarded, financial difficulties concerning OTT charges, print and publicity, distribution and theatre are negligible.
Panchami Medient will upload the movie digitally.
The MSO will download the same and ready it for telecast in the concerned channel as a ‘movie-on-demand’ during specific slots.
There will be three shows daily and a cable TV subscriber who pays Rs 100 can see any or all three shows. Movies can be watched via OTT platforms at Rs 200.
Subscribers can also download the ‘C HOME CINEMA’ mobile app, their OTT platform for streaming premiere shows of new Malayalam movies before theatrical release. The app can be downloaded from Google Play Store or the website www.panchamimedient.com.
“We offer a higher revenue for producers than what they may receive after theatrical runs; especially for small/medium budget filmmakers. Even if 10 per cent of our customers watch the movie, the producers will receive their returns,” Sibu added.