Tamil films preferred over other language films, appeals director Seenu Ramasamy

For many years, the cinemas of Tamil Nadu were dominated by foreign language films. There are many theaters in major cities, including the state capital Chennai, which prefer to screen English and Hindi films than Tamil films. This became a concern for the Tamil film industry a few years back and it was decided that cinemas across the state would screen Tamil films for at least a few days every year. However, many theater owners did not adhere to this agreement of the film fraternity.

Now lead director Seenu Ramasamy has asked the Producers Association to give priority to Tamil language films over dubbed English and Hindi films.

In a tweet, the filmmaker said that Tamil films should be given first priority while distributing films in Tamil Nadu, like they do in Kerala and Karnataka.

Along with Hindi and English movies, Kannada, Malayalam and Telugu dubbed movies are now playing in cinemas across Tamil Nadu. Telugu action drama Pushpa: The Rise starring Allu Arjun, which released on December 17, got more screens than Vishal’s Tamil action thriller anime.

Similarly, theaters are reserving screens as much as possible for SS Rajamouli’s big-budget Telugu film RRR to release on January 7, 2022. More screens have been set aside for Spider-Man: No Way Home.

The filmmakers allege that small budget Tamil films do not get even 10 per cent of the screens reserved for foreign language films, and this continues to be a cause of concern for the Tamil film industry.

Ramasamy raised the issue saying that when Kannada cinema was in such a crisis the film fraternity decided to impose several restrictions on foreign language films. They decided to screen other language films in Karnataka only two weeks after the initial release. The filmmaker also appealed to the Tamil Producers Association to take similar measures.

According to Ramasamy, the film industry is primarily profit-driven. You cannot show it in any theater nor can you force cinemas to do so. They are not believers. Ramasamy suggested that the only way to solve this was to increase the potential of Tamil films to the point where they could compete.

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