South Indian film producers announce stoppage of movie screenings from March 2

Lawrence Kim
March 3, 2018

Reportedly, the producers have claimed that the implementation of GST (Goods and Service Tax) is affecting the collections and reducing the processing fee by the digital service providers, will reduce the burden on them.

DSPs supply equipment to project films in theatres, using satellites and they levy a charge for this service, which is borne by producers and theatre owners. A source from Sree Mayuri Theatre, RTC X Roads, says they expect a loss of about Rs.20,000/day, including parking fee, canteen revenue, and ticket collections. "Hence, we have made a decision to stop new releases from 1 March".

It has been reported that no films will be screened at the theatres until the strike is called off. Theatres in Visakhapatnam too have been shut down with the closed gates sporting a message by the distributors and exhibitors of North Andhra.

A token shutdown by the Kerala film industry will taken place on Thursday and the Karnataka film industry launch the strike from March 9. We alerted all the departments and people concerned across South India about the strike, quite a few months ago. "We want a level playing field with minimal charges".

So, they have announced the strike and stop the screening of movies in all the South Indian states.

The producers believe that the payment should go as DSPs, when they set it up, had said that the amount would be withdrawn once they stabilise business.

The south Indian film industries have claimed that the Visual Projection Fee demanded by DSPs like Qube and UFO are too high and eat into their profits.

Jayendra Panchapakesan, co-founder of Qube Cinema, a leading DSP, tweeted that despite providing multiple price options and a cost reduction from Rs 22,000 to 14,000 per screening, all offers had been turned down by the film industries. "However, those who take theatres on a lease still have to pay rent to the owners; so it would be a hard situation for them", said Deepak. "We will assume no new Tamil releases for next two weeks but there is enough content that we can play from English and Hindi".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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