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Theatres to Reopen by June 30, Not Sooryavanshi But Hollywood Biggies to Release First to Check Footfalls?

Theatre owners are hopeful that the government will grant them permission to re-open theatres by June 30. Some exhibitors feel it's better to try the audience by releasing Hollywood biggies like Tenet first.

Published: May 30, 2020 7:45 AM IST

By Entertainment Desk | Edited by Vineeta Kumar

Theatres to Reopen by June 30, Not Sooryavanshi But Hollywood Biggies to Release First to Check Footfalls?
Robert Pattinson and John David Washington in a still from Tenet/ Akshay Kumar on the poster of Sooryavanshi

After writing a letter to both the state and the central governments, the theatre owners are now expecting the screens to reopen by June 30. A report in Mid-Day mentions that the distributors and exhibitors are hopeful about getting the permission of reopening the theatres between June 15 and June 30 with strict safety measures to be followed including deep cleaning of the audience seats daily and regular temperature check of the viewers. The other guidelines proposed by them include mandatory use of the Arogya Setu App, online distribution of the tickets, PPE kits to purchase and ordering food through an app.

There are as many as five big films that are set to hit the screens once the government allows reopening of the theatres: Sooryavanshi, Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai, Coolie No. 1, Laxmmi Bomb, and ’83. Many exhibitors believe that it won’t be the right decision to release these biggies as the first film as soon as the screens reopen because there would still be fear among the audience which means a drop in footfalls. As a solution, exhibitor Akshay Rathi, who owns 17 single screens across Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, suggests that they should begin by screening Hollywood biggies first to measure the footfalls. He told the daily, “Tenet, Wonder Woman 1984 and Mulan are slated to release between July and August. We can also collaborate with producers and take relatively smaller films like Ali Abbas Zafar’s Khaali Peeli beyond the 15 big centres.”

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This might also be supported by the producers for whom delaying a film by another week or two won’t harm much as hurrying the release and then acquiring a huge dip in the footfalls. As is, whenever theatre reopens, Sooryavanshi is going to be one of the first big films to hit the screens considering it’s the only one from the list that’s entirely completed while Radhe has still got a shooting schedule left and post-production work is pending on ’83.

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