THE DIGITAL BOOM IS HERE! AND AMAZON TOO!
In a recent article in Economic Times, they spoke to people from the industry about the digital wave that has taken the industry by a storm and how most of them would like to do more things on the digital platform. This is a digital age and it’s just blooming! It has already started giving a tough competition to many ﬁlms. People these days prefer to sit on the couch and watch the content online. They only make exceptions for a few ﬁlms of their favourite stars/directors. The industry has caught on with this trend already. Vikram Bhatt is going to be a part of the web series ‘Once Upon A Time With Vikram Bhatt’ on Sony Liv which will see Bhatt narrate his popular short stories on camera. Even Balaji Teleﬁlms have entered the digital space with the introduction of their app, ALTBalaji. Ekta Kapoor says that it was part of the re-branding and re-invention of the company.
She is now out to offer disruptive home-grown content in the digital space via her new app ALTBalaji on which, she has launched a slate of ﬁve shows already. The bigger advantage, among others, is that the people are getting all the entertainment the need on the go; they can stream on their tablets, phones, etc. Another good thing about digital medium is not only just the lack of censorship, but the ability to make a material travel anywhere across the world without any major hurdles. As they say, hassle free. There is no need to worry about how much money needs to be put into a project. It is way to cheaper to make content for digital than for the big screens. There is no need for a theatre to screen a show, or a distributor and exhibitor to chase and negotiate. There is no cost. It just cuts out all those additional costs that go into making a ﬁlm. Digital offers much more creative freedom and it is ﬁnancially sound as well. The biggest advantage here would be the reach, hands down. Someone sitting in the US could stream my content without any problems, just sounds efficient and smooth. This is not just another phase that is going to fade away. The biggest example of this would be Netﬂix, which was founded in the late 90s, just to put this into perspective. Now you can ﬁnd anything you want on Netﬂix, including Hindi ﬁlms. Amazon came up with Amazon Prime Video to rival Netﬂix. In India, Amazon signed long term output deals with ﬁve major production houses — Yash Raj.
Films, Excel Entertainment, Dharma Productions, Vishesh Films, and TSeries. Its arch rival Netﬂ ix has signed similar deals with Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies Entertainment and Aamir Khan’s Aamir Khan Productions. So now that people are getting all the content sitting on their couch and eating Popcorns and samosas they don’t have to pay 500 bucks for, it would be just wrong to think that digital isn’t here for the long run. I feel the theatres and TV companies have got a nice competition.