EXCLUSIVE: Frantic Friday: Pathetic Release Of T Series’ The Lady Killer, Sony Picture’s Aankh Micholi And Viacom’s Shastry Virudh Shastry Speaks About What’s Wrong With Mumbai Film Industry

In film industry, there is a difference between independent producers and the studios. Independent producers struggle for a good release size, decent promotions and the face value due to lack of strategy as well as P & A funds. That is why managers of actors ask for a studio before they ask for a script, that is why exhibitors give favourable shows and terms to studios and that is why studios get away with pathetic projects (yes, they don’t call it film in boardrooms).

Last Friday, something very interesting happened! Three big studios released one film each and none of those films got a decent showcasing, pre release buzz and ultimately very poor collections.

Aankh Micholi

Comedy of Errors is a genre that Hindi cinema has aced for decades now. Be it the original Golmaal or Rohit Shetty’s take on it, or Dhamaal, Hera Pheri and Hungama, the list is endless. Not all of these films have aged well, but the performances, the execution and the comic timing land even today. Aankh Micholi tries to bring back this flavour but without a disclaimer.

Sony has some kind of affinity towards Abhimanyu Dassani for whom they first produced a disaster Nikamma. Now with same actor, Sony Pictures India has delivered another disaster. Umesh Shukla And Paresh Rawal were unable to bring audience for a film which is led by Abhimanyu and Mrunal.

The studio has gone through a change in leadership lately and the ones heading it want to make only theatrical films, at least that’s the word in market. And they think that Aankh Micholi is a theatrical film which has hardly a token release with poor marketing and a third grade showcasing.

Shastry Virudh Shastry

Viacom 18 has done the same twice in two weeks! Last week they released Dhak Dhak which had a token release and zilch marketing. The situation was so bad that the producer Taapsee Pannu didn’t promote the film at all and took her name out from producer credits! This week again another token release Shastry Virudh Shastry dropped in cinemas just for the sake of it. Poor showcasing and zilch marketing were the common factors despite a decent cast.

The Lady Killer

This is the most intriguing case! A film which reportedly ran in trouble due to shortage of funds and finally released as an incomplete film since 10-15% shoot was still left. The trailer dropped 4 days before release and the film was released with a sole purpose of securing digital release on OTT. Arjun Kapoor and Bhumi Pednekar lead the film directed by Ajay Bahl and produced by T Series and Shailesh Singh.

Studios Worry About Profits And Digital Release With No Empathy Towards The Product

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Still the film was released without any marketing and that too in only 12 cinemas all India. Such a pathetic situation despite s studio backing the film. It’s because most of the studio heads are only bothered about profits and OTT release for the same. They have the least sympathy for directors, actors and technicians who put their hard work for months, if not years with their careers on stakes.

(Also read: After Shah Rukh Khan As Pathaan, Hrithik Roshan To Also Appear In A Cameo As Kabir In Salman Khan’s Tiger 3)

Even then, managers of actors, actors, directors and technicians will keep falling for this ‘studio’ trap again and again. Almost all the studios are out of business or on the verge of being extinct. Hopefully industry will learn to respect talent, technicians and independent producers too who put their passion behind films.

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