The theatres have resumed operations from November 2020 in most parts of the country. Yet, the filmmakers of the big, tent pole films didn’t straightaway go for a release. They preferred to wait to gauge and understand whether the audiences are ready to come to cinemas or still fear that they’ll catch the virus. This waiting period however has stretched to two months. Except Madam Chief Minister on January 22 and Aadhaar on February 5, no other Hindi film is scheduled for release in cinemas in the near future. Both are small-budget films and the exhibitors are constantly demanding that the big films should release ASAP to revive the cinema business.
The scenario in the South, meanwhile, is completely opposite. They started releasing their small and mid-sized films in 2020 itself. On January 13, Thalapathy Vijay’s much awaited Master arrived in cinemas on January 13. Its box office performance is extraordinary. Looking at the collections, one might feel that there’s no pandemic going on in the country! It gave a clear indication that come what may, the audiences are ready to come to theatres to watch a big, exciting flick.
And hence, the question that the trade is asking is – will we finally come to know when are Sooryavanshi and ’83 coming in cinemas? Both these films were all set to release but had to be postponed at the eleventh hour due to the imposition of the lockdown in March 2020. Hence, these two biggies would be the first big films to release in theatres.
Shibasish Sarkar, Reliance Entertainment Group CEO is a co-producer in both the films and has been constantly inundated with calls from media and trade, wanting to know an update about these films. When Bollywood Hungama reached out to him, he exclusively said, “It’s a decision which the directors, actors and we producers (of Sooryavanshi and ’83) have to take. I have not met them in the last 10-15 days. I aspire to bring at least one big film in the last week of March.”
Shibasish Sarkar, however, admits that Master’s historic opening, despite 50% occupancy rule, has been heartening. He revealed, “The thunderous opening of Master will give a lot of confidence to a lot of filmmakers. Not just Master, but even the performance of Krack (Telugu film starring Ravi Teja and Shruti Haasan) has been quite motivating for Hindi film producers, especially for those who have been sitting on the fence and who have been not sure whether or not to release their films. All credit goes to the makers of these films who bit the bullet and took the plunge. Apart from these two, a few more films have also been released in Tamil and Telugu.”
So when can we expect an announcement about the release dates? To which he replied, “For me to say that when we’ll make the announcement of the release dates of Sooryavanshi and ’83 is wrong as I have not even met the stakeholders. But definitely, we plan to make the decision soon, in a week or 10 days.” He adds, “We’ll conclude the discussion soon. There’s no other big film on the horizon seeking a release in the next two months. Radhe – Your Most Wanted Bhai (starring Salman Khan), of course, is scheduled for Eid.”
The journey of bringing both these films to cinemas won’t be easy, however. The multiplexes would be hoping that the old arrangement of VPF, revenue sharing and 8 week gap between theatrical and OTT release should be maintained. The producers, meanwhile, would want
changes. Shibasish Sarkar makes it clear that he has no information about these aspects, “Once we make up our minds about the release dates, then definitely we’ll take up these issues with the exhibitors. Right now, in the absence of a release date, there’s no point in talking about these things with the concerned parties.”
Besides Sooryavanshi and ’83, Reliance Entertainment also plans to bring three South films in theatres soon – Jagame Thandhiram, Aelay and Mandela. Jagame Thandhiram stars Dhanush and is expected to hit cinemas next month itself, in February 2021.
Sooryavanshi stars Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Gulshan Grover, Jaaved Jaaferi and Sikander Kher. Directed by Rohit Shetty, it is a part of his cop universe franchise and would also feature Ajay Devgn and Ranveer Singh, reprising the roles of Singham and Simmba, respectively. Meanwhile, ’83, as the name suggests, is based on the Indian Cricket Team’s unbelievable victory in the 1983 Cricket World Cup. Directed by Kabir Khan, it stars Ranveer Singh along with Deepika Padukone, playing his wife. Actors like Tahir Raj Bhasin, Ammy Virk, Saqib Saleem, Hardy Sandhu, Sahil Khattar and others play the rest of the team members.
Also Read: EXCLUSIVE: Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif’s Sooryavanshi now eyeing the REPUBLIC DAY 2021 weekend!