Going by the unreliable behaviour of the Indian audience towards a majority of films hitting the theatres, the film industry has been turned into a laboratory experimenting with several concepts, ideas and notions, with only a hope that an extremely new thinking might appeal to the audience.
Analysing the genre of movies that are getting popular with the audience, crossover films have played a vital role and have been successful in carving a niche for themselves. Will this success story continue for such movies?
Says Anant Mahadevan, director of DIL VIL PYAR VYAR, "The audience is craving for a change. They are getting inclined towards realistic cinema. The era of the so-called popular formula-based films has run out. In fact, a film which has no big star cast is also doing well as is quite evident with the success of films like BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM and MONSOON WEDDING."
Deepak Tijori, who's just completed OOPS!, agrees, "Crossover films have a bright future, for foreign distributors are eager to buy the rights of the films. Such movies encourage one to step into the international arena and compete with the stalwart film-makers across the globe."
However, Ashish Bhatnagar of iDream feels that crossover films have a limited market in India. "Crossover films are primarily aimed at the NRIs. Movies like THE GURU and BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM completely cater to the NRI audience who try to connect to their Indian roots. India does not seem to be a big market for such movies," he says.
PRODUCERS ARE UNITED THIS TIME
With the production sector deciding on stopping all new releases from April 1, the release dates of all films has gone topsy-turvy. But the producers, whose films were scheduled to release in April/May, are standing by their associations. Have a look at what they have to say –
"I have to obey the resolutions adopted by my association. As far as I am concerned, if I feel that I am in trouble, so are the distributors who have invested money in the film. Today, with 90 out of 100 films flopping and with video piracy so rampant and uncontrolled, the producers should have the right to sell the cable and satellite rights. That way, at least he can recover part of his investment."
"I am all for the strike. One has to learn to sacrifice personal interests for a larger one. Though it is unfortunate to call a strike at a time when the business is expected to pick up, I for one have to abide by the decision of the associations and have to express solidarity with my leaders. There was a pressing need to get together and define rules."
"How many distributors have given the producers their due? How many producers have made money before the release of their films? With so many films failing at the box-office, what is wrong if the producers decide to sell the rights to a channel and make some money out of it? There are times when the distributors have made money but not shared it with the producers. It's time we producers put our foot down."
"If one sacrifices now, we would gain a lot at a later stage. It's about time we came together and revolted against the high-handed and dictatorial tactics of the distributors. They have been dictating terms and conditions to us since a long time. A film is a producer's baby and the distributors have been trying to tell us what to do with our baby."
"This strike is not for one entity, but for the entire industry. We have been trying to sort out things with distributors, but there has been no response from their end. They want to keep functioning like they did twenty years ago. If the producers don't survive, the film industry also will not. No doubt, we are concerned about the producers who have lined up their films for release, but this stand will benefit the entire industry."