Kamal Hassan to premiere Vishwaroop in LA
To avoid a direct confrontation with the multiplex theatre chains in North India, which are up in arms against Kamal Haasan's decision to hold a Direct To Home (DTH) premiere of his new film, Vishwaroop would be premiered only in Los Angeles on December 10. Says Kamal Haasan, "We knew all these problems would happen. A DTH premiere of a new film has not happened anywhere in the world. I am willing to take the risk because this move is going to change the movie-viewing experience. We have a premiere in LA on December 10. We couldn't get a DTH deal in the US worked out in time. I am flying down for the LA premiere with all the technicians. I want to show off the technical crew that pulled the films visual effects. They are on a par with what we see in Hollywood. Shekhar Kapoor, who plays a role, would join us."
Kamal Haasan's partner Gauthami who has done all the costumes in Vishwaroop, left for LA a few days earlier than the rest of the team.
Kamal Haasan says Vishwaroop's DTH premiere in the South has not affected its theatrical release. "We've 400 theatres in Tamil Nadu alone. We've confirmations of theatres all across Malaysia, Singapore. In Kerala, even the government is supporting our DTH plans. In Andhra Pradesh, the well-known producer-director Dasari Narayan Rao has taken Vishwaroop for distribution. He believes the DTH screening wouldn't affect its theatrical run."
He admits he would now have to release Vishwaroop on DTH in the North and skip the theatrical release on Friday, January 10. "We have theatres in the North India but not in numbers that we require. We wanted 900 theatres. We are short of that target."
The actor-director-producer says the PVR chain of theatres backed out of a "verbal agreement". Says Kamal, "I had a gentleman's agreement with PVR that if I don't do DTH in the North India, I'd have his full support for a theatrical release all across North India. Then when I went ahead with my DTH plans for South India, PVR changed their mind and said they won't give me their theatres even if I did DTH only on the South. We had to call off the deal. There's a confusion of priorities between the North and South. The North chains feel, 'Wahan manaa kar rahe hain to yahan mana karna padega.'"
However, Kamal Haasan is going ahead with his all-India DTH plans on January 10. "I am not worried. If the theatres don't come forward to release Vishwaroop in the North, I am ready to go straight to DTH in the North. After they see that the DTH in the South would not affect the film's theatrical performance in the North, they'd want a delayed theatrical release after the DTH screening. I am confident this move would prove a positive game-changer for the movie-going experience."
Watch Promo: Vishwaroop