After Kurukshetra, Mohanlal's next big budget film Sagar Alias Jackie is in the shadow of a tug of war between the producer and theatre owners on the issue of minimum guarantee'. The film was scheduled to release on March 26.
At this time the Kerala Film Exhibitors Federation [KFEF] has threatened not to screen Sagar Alias Jackie, if the film's producer goes ahead with his plan of demanding 'minimum guarantee' from the cinema theatres. "The cinema theatres affiliated to our association will not release the film if the producer and distributor of the film Antony Perumbavoor asks us to give a certain amount as the minimum guarantee, " KFEF president P.V.Basheer Ahmed told reporters on Saturday at Calicut.
He explained that according to the 'minimum guarantee' system, the proprietor of a theatre has to pay in advance a huge amount to the distributor and if the film fails at the box office, the former would have to incur the losses. "Such a system was tried by distributors in Tamil Nadu while releasing superstar films but was later withdrawn" he said. "At a time when Malayalam cinema is going through a crisis, the practice of ' minimum guarantee' cannot be encouraged'', Basheer said. He has also requested the government to allow theatres to increase the service charge.