This past week, I got to know that all the major four southern film industries were planning to go on a strike for a very important and relevant issue we face in our industry as well. Then within a few days, it was confirmed that the Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada industries signed a joint MoU and announced that they are all going on a strike from March 1st. Which means that there will no new releases in the entire south barring the Hindi releases which are lined up to release.

This drastic step is being taken by the industries down south because, the amount the digital service providers like UFO, Qube and others is not acceptable by the producers and it has started to pinch them more now because of GST in the market as well. What the four industries are actually asking for are different set slabs for differently budgeted movies so it is affordable for all movies which are made in the south. The industries believe that given the GST issue, this kind of relief from the digital service providers will go a long way into making movies overall more profitable.

This is such a prime example of what unity can do. What do you reckon the digital service providers will eventually do? They need the business and a strike is in no way going to pay their overheads. The unity is the key factor in this situation. I won’t be surprised to see other regional industries taking this issue and making the digital providers lower their costs for them as well.

There is always strength in numbers, a fact we in the Hindi film industry always tend to forget. This is a major issue, not only for other producers but also for producers in our industry as well. But the fact of the matter is we are too busy running others down then how will we ever succeed in making something to the overall betterment. The bigger producers aren’t going to be too bothered with this because they are all okay to pay the big amounts. The smaller producers are too insignificant for them to make any major impact.

Producer association should try and at least initiate some kind of conversation with the digital providers, who knows we might be able to get the situation sorted for us all. But we know that will never happen. But the least we can do is dream! Trade Magazine