Andhra Pradesh theatres cheer after government eases restrictions

Movie-goers flock to cinema halls following nod to 100% occupancy, second shows

VIJAYAWADA: The state government’s move to allow one hundred per cent occupancy and screening of second show by relaxing curfew by an hour has helped film theatres to improve their occupancy and thereby revenue collection.

While the first wave of coronavirus forced complete closure of theatres for some months, the second wave restricted the occupancy to 50 per cent. With no major films coming up, Tollywood suffered a massive loss.

However, the government’s decision to allow screening of second shows (earlier it was only matinee shows) and full occupancy has resulted in an impressive turnout as movie-goers are flocking theatres.
New releases like ‘Most Eligible Bachelor’, ‘Pelli Sandadi', ‘Maha Samudram’ and ‘Seeti Maar’ have been bringing in crowds to the theatres.

The state has over 1,100 theatres and a majority of them are controlled by some Tollywood bigwigs and some are leased out to exhibitors, who bear the brunt in their day-to-day maintenance in case of any issues with regard to screening of films.

A film exhibitor said “All four shows are reporting housefull collections, especially for the two newly released films. If good films are released, we are hopeful that the same trend may continue. It will help us to overcome loss of revenue due to Covid-19.”

Though some theatres are scrupulously ensuring compliance with Covid protocol, many are giving a damn to such guidelines.

Telugu Film Chamber of Commerce president Narayana Dasu Narang said, “The state government’s nod for 100% occupancy and second shows is helping to improve income in film theatres. Even families are turning up at theatres.”

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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