CHANGE IS CONSTANT
The world of Hindi Cinema has been going through a rapid metamorphosis in the past few years. Cinema and society have always had a symbiotic relationship where both reflect each other, while sometimes cinema influences social change and sometimes a rapidly changing society impact cinema.
Listing down the top 5 trends which reflect this change –
The definition of entertainment – Going to the theatre has been India’s primary source of entertainment, but in the recent years it’s competing with increasing penetration of television, the even more rapid penetration of smart phones, sports viewership (Cricket and more), live events, digital shows and many more. Even in cinema the audience affinity towards experimenting with genres of content has rapidly seen an increase, sheer star power can no longer assure a box office success and an experimental film with no major stars can cross 100 crores. It’s often said that the audience has become unpredictable, but the fact is that unless the films have good story telling and engaging and fresh concepts we will not put our money.
The resurgence of India – An increased pride in the audiences of being Indian and believe in stories and concepts with Indian history, Indian culture and Indian ethos is clearly visible. No longer does the mindless aping of foreign theme and foreign locations impresses the audiences. Historical biopics, icons of India, both old and new and stories of patriotism and nationalism have found a sound resonance with what the audiences want to see. Indian Cinema is reflecting an India which is proud, confident and ready to take on the world.
Technology – There is an increasing bunch of audiences who are seeking the complete movie experience, hence 4k screens, 3 D, IMAX 3D, 4 DX etc are on the rise. Audiences are willing to pay extra in terms of ticket prices if the theatre going experience is enhanced. This is a trend not just limited to metros but in tier II cities, just in varying degrees.
Hollywood and Regional cinema – The Hindi movie goer now has an increased set of options. On one end there is the sheer visual delight of watching Hollywood films like ‘Mission Impossible’ and ‘Avengers’ (dubbed versions now almost being 50% of the India business) and on the other end there are rooted stories with a greater connect especially in Marathi and Punjabi. Hence Hindi cinema needs to get a perfect mix of both worlds to survive and grow or will continue to be squeezed on both ends.
The Digital Era – The advent of the digital era is very evident in the movie business; at one end the newer avenues like Netflix and Amazon prime are changing the dynamics of the classical movie distribution and revenue models, on the other end marketing of films is feeling the impact with an increasing power of digital media and influence of social media. YouTube views, Instagram likes, twitter followers are now indicators of a films buzz track.