Yash-Raj film distributors want more profit percentage

Yash-Raj productions will be releasing their first highly anticipated film of the year, Fanaa next week. The year 2006 will also see the release of their film Dhoom 2, a sequel to the earlier Dhoom which received good reviews at the box-office. Besides their own productions they also have an impressive line up of films for distribution like Rakesh Roshan’s sequel Krrish and Karan Johar’s Kabhie Alvida Na Kehna. Overall Yash-Raj seems to have quite a few big releases this year, and it is this fact that has led the Yash-Raj distributors to demand for a higher percentage of profits from multiplex owners.

Unfortunately many multiplex owners are facing this dilemma and are trying to negotiate the percentage of the hike with Yash-Raj distributors. The release date of the first Yash-Raj film is nearing and hence multiplex owners do not have too much time on their hands to come to a decision. The Yash-Raj distributors have asked for a phenomenal 7-10 per cent hike. Sahdev Ghai, head of distribution at Yash-Raj films says “We at Yash-Raj provide quality and we spend a huge amount of money on our productions, sometimes around Rs 25 crore on a film. We are not asking them to share their earnings right from parking to eatables etc. But we have a right to protect our own interest.” He also states that no multiplex owner is being forced to take their films; they are entitled to make their own choices.

However film trade analysts and multiplex owners feel that they are being cornered and that the hike is not fair to them or cine goers who will ultimately have to bear the brunt. Owners say that people who watch the movies in multiplex theatres, especially on weekends when there is a high demand may have to shell out more than the already high price that they are currently paying to watch films. Neeraj Goswami of Inox Cinemas says “Weekend rates could go up to Rs 200-225.” A leading distributor says “Just because today they have a big film scheduled for release they are being unreasonable, but what will they do when they have a small film to release? What will they do if the exhibitors do not give into their demands then?”

Trade analyst Amod Mehra claims that what Yash-Raj distributors are doing is unethical and harmful for the trade. Many people in the film industry are unhappy about the hike in percentage of profits. Ultimately, consumers are the people who will suffer the most, as they will in evidently be shelling out more money. Let’s wait and hope that Yash-Raj distributors and multiplex owners will be able to work out a deal where all parties, including consumers will get a fare deal.