HYDERABAD: Like all other sectors, production is also slowly moving towards adapting what is called the ‘new normal’. Shoots have resumed keeping in place all the necessary precautions and safety measures. “In Hyderabad also, TV and movie shoots have resumed. To maintain the norms of social distancing non-fictional shows have begun shooting without a live audience. But in some cases there are audiences that connect virtually to keep the format of the show intact.
The audience can ask questions to the guest. Shows like Big Boss that are big ticket shows are making a comeback following all the safety precautions,” says Prashanti Malisetti, the Founder and CEO of Pixel Pictures. The production house, she said, is using the time to research and ideate on newer formats. “Our experience and learning during the multiple adaptations of International formats, has helped us and we are presently working on creating original formats (scripted and unscripted) with global standards.
Our current focus is on under-12 kids content.” Interestingly, total viewing hours have increased 2.3 billion viewing hours across live TV, DVR, VOD and OTT in April 2020 vs April 2019. OTT alone added 1.4B total viewing hours. (COMSCORE). “I think the trend will further increase as many popular reality shows are coming back and also many big budget movies are directly getting released online which has led to more viewership. Also, with the start of the IPL and people finding solace in their favourite games both tv and OTT viewership will definitely increase,” she adds.
In the last few months, news has attracted a lot of eyeballs. The viewers have become more exposed to sensationalised news stories due to the lockdown and the lack of original content on Television. Similarly movies, food and cookery viewership has spiked too. Also a lot of viewers have shifted to OTT platforms. These are interesting times for kids because parents are realising that it is safer to give them more screen time rather than sending them out to play.
So when does she think will normalcy return? “The revival process has begun but with precautions. The risk appetite has come down. Safety, frugality and adapting to this change have become the major tasks for any person. The media and entertainment industry are no exception. Unlike few industries where work from home was still an option, media and entertainment industry was shut for recordings, shootings, etc. The impact of lockdown on the industry has been a mixed bag of despair, loss and hope. Cinema halls remain shut even to this day. low, OTT platforms are more in vogue than ever before.”
- Manju Latha Kalanidhi