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Cinema theatres and OTT platforms compliment each other, they don’t need to be adversaries”: Anand Pandit

Veteran producer Anand Pandit says, in the end good content will always be the real winner.

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Veteran producer Anand Pandit whose two big-budget films, the Abhishek Bachchan starrer, ‘The Big Bull’ and the Amitabh Bachchan and Emran Hashmi thriller, ‘Chehre’ will be released on OTT platforms soon, does not really think that artificial binaries need to be created within the entertainment industry at the time of a global pandemic. He feels, the speculation about whether OTT platforms will eat into the profits of cinema halls in the long run, is a tad premature.

He says, “As someone who grew up watching a superstar like Amitabh Bachchan create mass hysteria in cinema halls during the seventies and eighties, I firmly believe that nothing can replace the excitement of big screen entertainment.

It has survived cable and satellite television, massive waves of video piracy and it will survive the pandemic. Please note, I did not pit OTT platforms against movie theatres because I think they compliment each other and I don’t think the two share an adversarial relationship.

During the pandemic, OTT platforms have rescued producers from mounting losses by releasing their films. After the pandemic, people will make a beeline for theatres with a vengeance and still watch or rewatch their favourite shows and yes, even big and small budget films on OTT platforms. In this era, the consumers of content are the real winners and both OTT platforms and theatres will be busy wooing them rather than competing with each other.”

He adds that the current time has decidedly been challenging for theatres but a silver lining seems right ahead for all stakeholders in the business of entertainment. He concludes, “This pandemic has given the industry a long moment to dig deep and find ways to keep its engines running. We have had to realise that when the viewer cannot come to us, we have to go to her/him.

After the pandemic, both OTT platforms and the cinema halls will co-exist because they each offer something unique to the viewers. We will find a way to work together and not against each other because that is the way forward. The industry is not fighting for its turf. It is expanding it.”