Film Industries around the world have come to a complete halt due to the COVID-19 outbreak. In the same vein, our Sandalwood is also facing its own set of challenges amid the pandemic crisis. A leading distributor revealed that even after the lockdown’s end when the situation goes back to normal, it will still be very difficult for the Kannada film industry to recover its investments.
One must keep in mind that, unlike other industries, the Kannada filmdom is heavily reliant on theatrical revenue to make a profit. It is still growing in terms of OTT presence and has just started making its mark on various digital media.
Meanwhile, the release calendar and shoot schedule of various biggies that have huge money riding on them have gone completely awry. It’s being said that around 100 films currently under production in various stages have been severely hit by the lockdown. This includes Puneeth Rajkumar’s Yuvarathnaa, Sudeep’s Kotigobba 3, and Darshan’s Roberrt and Raja Veera Madakari Nayaka to name a few.
Top producer Rockline Venkatesh told PTI that the industry is losing crores of rupees each day due to the lockdown. He then went on to forecast that it would take at least a year and a half for the industry to be back on its feet. "That too if the government does hand-holding but if the industry faces a bad hit in terms of income tax and GST and other taxation, 80-90 per cent of the industry will face closure," he added.
On the other hand, the Secretary of Karnataka Cine Artistes' Association revealed that the other threat being faced by content creators is preventing their unreleased work from 'piracy and leaks.’ An industry insider also stated, "People don't have money. We will know the impact when things become normal. Questions many ask if people will return to cinema halls like the way they did before or they prefer to stay away from crowd." (sic)