Theater owners reveal market value of stars in Tamil cinema, leading to debate among fans on social media
Fans of many leading actors are disappointed as the Theatre Owners' statement revealed the exact market status of their favorite stars.
The Tamil Nadu Theater and Multiplex Owner’s Association issued a revised share percentage proposal on Tuesday. While producers are upset as the theater owners reduced the share percentage by a huge margin (10-20%), fans of many leading actors are equally disappointed as the statement revealed the exact market status of their favorite stars.
Rajinikanth, Vijay, and Ajith who have great opening pull and steady collections in consecutive weeks featured in the tier-1 category. As films featuring these stars don’t incur a big loss, theater owners have given higher share percentage. Theater owners in ‘A’ centers will provide 60% share to the distributors and producers but the rest of the theaters provide only 65% in the first-week run. In the second week, A center theaters will only provide 55% to the films featuring the tier 1 actors while the rest of the theaters will only give 50%.
In tier 2, we have actors like Suriya, ‘Jayam’ Ravi, Dhanush, STR, Sivakarthikeyan, and Vijay Sethupathi. For the films featuring the tier 2 actors, the proposed ‘A’ center theaters’ share is 55% in the first week and the rest of theaters will provide 60%. In the second week, A centers will provide a share of 50% while ‘B’ and ‘C’ centers will give a share percentage of 55.
The proposed share percentage will affect the overall revenue of the producers. For example, if we take Vijay’s recent two films Sarkar and Mersal, both yielded more than 70cr share in Tamil Nadu but with the new proposal, the total share of both these films will be below 60cr rupees.
In his statement, Subramaniam, President of The Tamil Nadu Theater and Multiplex Owner’s Association says "Producers have been increasing the remuneration of the actors and demanding higher share from theater owners. If this trend continues, it will be very difficult to run theaters. In Kerala, none of the centers give more than 60% share and we are only trying to adapting the same trend here. Whatever we mentioned in the statement is a mere suggestion. Our intention is only to regulate the business. As we couldn’t list out the names of all the directors and actors, mentioned only the important ones."
Veteran director Bharathiraaja who is heading the ad hoc committee of Tamil Film Producers Council says, “The statement of the Tamil Nadu Theater and Multiplex Owner’s Association sounds as if they have decided to vanquish all the producers and distributors who are already struggling to stay in the business. Though there is no President and administrative officers for the Tamil Film Producers Council, theater owners should take any decision only after consulting the Government appointed ad hoc committee. If they try to bypass us, producers and distributors will stage a huge protest.”
A popular distributor on the condition of anonymity says, “Theater owners outside Chennai, Chengalpattu, and Coimbatore are not properly paying the taxes including GST and local body tax but while settling the share, they reduce these taxes from the total ticket amount. They also charge a good sum of amount for the maintenance. On top of these allowances, they still demand more share from producers and distributors. If they still pressurize us for more share, small and medium budget producers will stop making films. For example, they have categorized Karthi and Sasikumar who have good command in rural areas as the tier 3 actors so there will not be many producers to bankroll their films. The new proposal will also affect Vijay, Rajinikanth and Ajith’s films.”
The most shocking fact here is that veteran Kamal Haasan who was once considered as an arch-rival to Rajinikanth has been categorised as the tier 3 star by the theater owners. Besides Kamal Haasan, other well-known stars like Vikram and Karthi are also ranked in the third category. For the films featuring tier three stars, theaters (irrespective of A, B and C center) will only provide 50% share in the first week and 45% share in the second week.
Fans of Kamal Haasan, Vikram, and Karthi are quite upset with this statement as they can't debate with the rival fans as the names of their favorite stars only featured in the tier 3 category. Producers also feel that the theater owners should have discreetly maintained this list.
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