Cinemas opened up in many parts of the country on Thursday though the properties opening up was very limited as were the screenings in these cinemas which opened and it is expected that more will open up today. The response was muted which was expected but with nearly 5000 tickets selling across the country it is not that bad considering how many cinemas actually opened and what sort of content was being played. It would not have been a surprise if the number was in hundreds rather than thousands. The biggest chain in the country PVR sold around 700 tickets on very limited screenings which could well have been the all India number considering the situation.These ticket sales came from mainly English and regional content with Hindi having a minor contribution. This is expected also as its old films being screened and on top many of them are flop films like Section 375 and Thappad. The HIT titles like Good Newwz and Housefull 4 have been screened on television with the latter getting over a record breaking 10 crore impressions in screenings over the last 7-8 months so there will not be an audience here either especially in these social distancing conditions. The biggest HIT of 2020 Tanhaji - The Usung Warrior also had screenings but this film had also ended its run when theatres shut though its possible it could find an audience in Maharashtra where it turned out to be one of the biggest blockbusters ever though the state government have not given the green light for cinemas to open in Maharashtra.
The numbers will get better as more properties open up but it cant go far without any new content and this is a huge issue. Khaali Peeli will not make it cinemas this week due to an issue over print costs between the distributors and exhibitors though that is not the type of film which will get audiences into theatres in these times.
Its pretty much certain that distributors and exhibitors are going to have issues agreeing sharing terms with the new content as distributors will want more compared to the pre covid19 terms as business will be limited. So what happens here is an unknown. Tenet which releases across the world in August had better than normal terms in most countries. This film will be the hope for some sort of audience in the Hindi markets while certain territories may get some public in with regional films