Bollywood joins hands against multiplexes (Lead)

April 7th, 2009 - 8:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Shah Rukh Khan Mumbai, April 7 (IANS) Bollywood biggies including Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan and Ronnie Screwvala Tuesday came together to solve the tussle between the producers and multiplex owners over profit sharing and asked for a change in the revenue sharing system to keep the industry “healthy”.
“The industry can survive only if all the sectors earn in fairness. Until that happens, the industry cannot be healthy and happy. I think it should be a partnership of equals (50-50). Distributors and exhibitors have to find a way to make it a viable business within their fifty percent. Within my fifty percent I have to make it profitable,” Aamir said at a press conference here.

“Filmmaking is a very volatile business… we as filmmakers have to make our business viable… This is one industry and we all can survive only if each and every sector will earn a fair share… we want to find a solution to this,” he added.

Aamir and Shah Rukh were here to express their solidarity over the issue with other Bollywood big names like Karan Johar, Mukesh Bhatt, Ramesh Sippy, Screwvala and Yash Chopra.

Shah Rukh, however, stressed that the press meet should not be seen as a “power show”.

“This is not a power show. We haven’t gathered here to threaten multiplexes. This is not a show of power but of togetherness,” said Shah Rukh who also felt that there should be equal sharing of revenue.

“We are not here to deprive our audiences of the films we make… I want to make it clear that this is not a strike, this is just a way to repair the problems. This is not something for greed or little profits. It is a basic fight for equality. We are here for the cause of ‘fair rights for Friday nights’,” he said.

The “Om Shanti Om” star also expressed his opinion on the multiplexes looking down upon small films and said that such films suffer a lot.

“Small films fail to negotiate. Sometimes people (multiplexes) say that your films are not nice. Only the audiences have the right to tell us that our films are not nice. It is their right to tell us about the issues on creativity,” he said.

The negotiations over 50-50 revenue sharing between producers and multiplexes started around February. As a result, the united producers and distributors forum decided early March not to push any new releases in multiplexes. In a statement issued to the press, producers and distributors have said that they have decided to suspend marketing and distribution of all films set to release after April 4, 2009.

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