Cinema Day opens the eyes of movie moguls. Does Bollywood pay attention?

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It seems like everyone got the wrong tree so far. Various reasons have been given as to why Bollywood films are plummeting at the box office faster than you might say… well, “Bollywood”. On National Cinema Day on September 24, 2022, cinema halls reduced ticket prices to Rs 75. Lo and behold, according to the media, it attracted more than 6.5 million moviegoers to the theaters .

Bollywood hasn’t had a gala since Covid hit the world and disrupted every aspect of our lives. It changed long-standing habits, and one of them was the way we consume content. Our cell phones, TVs, and laptops/PCs became our go-to screens, and even when the world opened up, we refused to give up our personal screens. While movie theaters beckoned us with new releases from A-list stars, lip-smacking snacks and the assurance of a heavily sanitized environment, we rarely took the bait.

The year 2022, which is expected to be a banner year for Bollywood, has instead been a horror show, with film after film registering embarrassing box office scores. Everything – from nepotism to something a star said years ago, to the culture of hashtag boycotts, to poor storylines, to movie reviews panning the film, to Southern cinema that walks in the heart of Hindi – has been shown as the cause of the failure of Hindi films.

But the same moviegoers, who have so far stayed away from cinemas, had no qualms about coming to cinemas in droves as ticket prices were reduced to just Rs 75, at the instead of the usual price of Rs 250.

So, has the ticket price always been the problem? Looking at the response, the producers of the recently released Brahmastra decided to keep the ticket price for the film at Rs 100 for four more days. The film saw its box office receipts jump 240%, all due to National Movie Day.

It’s time for the film industry as well as multiplex and movie theater owners to rationalize ticket prices. The price of entry shouldn’t be so prohibitive that it starts hurting his business. It’s time for a reality check, the movie industry.

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