Are Digital Rights Affecting Telugu Overseas Collections?

Sunday, February 10th, 2019, 02:37:31 PM IST

Nearly a month after the release of Telugu films, digital platforms like Amazon Prime, Netflix, Hotstar etc are readily premiering these films on their platforms.

Since mid of 2018 to the beginning of 2019, several Telugu big budget films like Anatakrisham, Hello Guru Prema Kosame, Amar Akbar Anthony, Savyasachi, NOTA, Goodachari, KGF, Padi Padi Leche Manasu, Kathanayakudu etc have all premiered on digital platforms and have made them available for viewing across the world.

Film analysts have now been wondering out aloud, whether the digital premiers of such big-ticket films, within a month of its release in theatres, is actually affecting the box office collections.

A regular Telugu film in the US not only costs anywhere between $10-$15 but can range anywhere close to $22-$25 depending on the actual film. Keeping this aside from the fact that most theatres that play Indian films abroad are usually quite far away from the city. A regular Indian family of four living abroad would then be spending a minimum of $100 on fuel, snacks and theatre tickets to enjoy a Telugu or regional film.

Comparing these expense to the luxury of watching the same film a month later on any digital platform for a fraction of the price seems to be a tempting offer for NRIs living abroad.

While most fans of Telugu cinema definitely prefer watching a hit film in theatres across the world, however, the problem arises when a film gets an average talk.

Example, in the last two months alone, film distributors have lost close to 30 crores on films like VVR, Antariksham, Kathanayakudu, Padi Padi Leche Manasu and Mr Majnu which were a washout in theatres. Distributors are facing huge loses even for films that received average or below average talk amongst filmgoers.

So, the question that now arises is whether NRI filmgoers would actually prefer watching an average Telugu film in theatres or would they prefer watching it on any digital platform?