MAI believes that when the crisis ends, the combination of the "pent-up demand" and the promise of new movies would boost film business and contribute massively in reviving the industry
The Multiplex Association of India (MAI) has appealed to studio partners, producers, artistes and content creators to support the cinema exhibition sector by holding their films and releasing them in theatres once they’re opened again. “To this end, we urge all studios, producers, artistes and other content creators, to kindly respect the exclusive theatrical window, which has been a time-tested industry practice, agreed to by all stake-holders, not just in India, but even globally, for several decades,” MAI said in a statement.
The association claims that it is committed to working with government institutions and partners through the weeks and months to come to ensure that cinemas survive this unprecedented global pandemic. According to MAI, when the crisis ends, the combination of the “pent-up demand” and the promise of new movies would boost film business and contribute massively in reviving the industry. “The collective, social experience of watching films on the big screen needs to be preserved and it can be done so only with the collective support of all stakeholders,” it explained.
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India is currently under the lockdown with around 1.3 billion people asked to stay home in view of the coronavirus outbreak. MAI’s appeal comes after several big-budget films including Akshay Kumar starrer Laxmmi Bomb were rumoured to take direct-to-digital release amid the lockdown.
Established under the aegis of FICCI in 2002, the national multiplex trade body represents more than 18 regional and national multiplex chains, including PVR, INOX, Carnival and Cinepolis, and operates more than 2900 screens across the country. The association had previously appealed to landlords across the country to waive off rent and common area maintenance (CAM) for all the multiplex operators during the period of the current nation-wide lockdown.