Theatres re-open, but Friday seems like a dry day


Owners look forward to a better response from patrons during the upcoming festival season and the year-end

Many single-screen theatres and multiplexes opened their doors to the public for the first time in months on Friday. However, exhibitors whom The Hindu spoke to were disheartened by the response from patrons. This was expected as ‘trial runs’ by some multiplexes on October 15 saw shows being cancelled as no one turned up, said one exhibitor.

In Bengaluru, PVR and some single-screen theatres, including Santosh, Navarang, Veerabhadreshwara and Sri Vinayaka, resumed screenings on Friday.

Manikandan R., owner of Sri Vinayaka Cinemas in Varthur, said that they were running three different films in two languages. “The response was not as bad as I had expected it to be. Around 15% of the available seats were occupied. I am sure the situation will improve in the following weeks, especially during the upcoming festival season and the year-end,” he said.

A representative of Venkateshwara theatre in K.R. Puram said that they would open their doors to the public from Sunday (October 18) while Veeresh Cinema near Basaveshwarnagar is expected to do so by October 23.

Theatre owners are hoping that new films will attract cinema fans. However, producers are adopting a wait-and-watch approach.

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Hasmukh Bafna, a film distributor, said that theatres in other parts of Karnataka also saw dismal football. “In many places, including Davangere and Shivamogga, only one or two theatres are open,” he said. “Theatres were one of the first to stop operations and one of the last to resume. Hence, it will take some time. By November 1, most theatres across the State will start functioning.”



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Sagar Biswas

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