Thiruvananthapuram: Malayalam film industry made a turnaround in 2012 with an annual investment of about Rs 350 crore and release of 128 movies in contrast to sequential flops and losses that crippled the industry in the last few years. What is more significant, according to industry players, is this is the first time the industry crossed the triple century mark in terms of annual investment after stagnating around Rs 200-250 crore in previous years.
The release of 128 movies in a single year is also a record for Malayalam cinema, and eight of them reaped handsome profits and 40 films collected their investment back. This showing is impressive in every aspect compared with release of 93 films in 2010 which further slid to 88 in 2011. Thattathin Marayathu, Usthad Hotel, Mayamohini, Ordinary, Run Baby Run, My Boss, and Mallu Singh were some movies which did quite well at the Box Office last year. More than 10 dubbed movies from other languages were also released across the state, and most of them wooed audiences, industry sources said.
Once rated highly for producing critically acclaimed movies and crowd-pulling commercial hits simultaneously, the film industry faced troubled times in last few years due to a combination of factors, including rampant video piracy and lack of good scripts. Movies with superstars continuously flopped in theatres and films by yesteryear super directors also fared badly during this period. When the industry in neighbouring Tamil Nadu made several experiments in subject and narration, Mollywood stuck to its beaten path and larger-than-life heroes, distancing audiences and making them seek greener pastures in other languages.