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Beginning Today, No New Movie Release in Tamil Nadu Till Tax Rollback

The AIADMK government had imposed a tax of 10 per cent on upcoming Tamil films and 20 per cent on non-Tamil productions.

Poornima Murali | CNN-News18

Updated:October 6, 2017, 12:05 PM IST
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Beginning Today, No New Movie Release in Tamil Nadu Till Tax Rollback
Poster of the Dulquer Salmaan-starrer Solo, which is being affected by the protests in Tamil Nadu.
Chennai: The Film Producers Council in Tamil Nadu has decided to not release any film in the state as a mark of protest against the state-imposed entertainment tax.

The AIADMK government had imposed a tax of 10 per cent on upcoming Tamil films and 20 per cent on non-Tamil productions. This will be over and above the GST rate of 28 per cent on cinema tickets above Rs 100 and 18 per cent on tickets below Rs 100.

Dulquer Salmaan-starrer ‘Solo’ is the high-budget film hit by the protest, with the director announcing on Twitter that the film would release.

After being showcased on Thursday, Solo was pulled off screens after the protests on Friday. According to industry sources, the producers of the romantic-thriller are set to incur losses of around Rs 8 crore if the movie doesn’t run in theatres for the next 20 days.

A total of seven movies, slated for release this weekend, have been put on hold and if the protests continue in the same way, superstar Vijay-starrer ‘Mersal’ may not hit the silver screen. The producers of Mersal will probably be incurring losses to the tune of RS 100 crore.

Even theatres are gearing up for huge losses, with Satyam Cinemas’ owner stating that they are set to lose Rs 30 – 35 lakh a day, if the protests continue.

Abhirami Ramanathan, president of the Tamil Film Chamber of Commerce, told CNN-News18, “As far as we are concerned, the existing movies will run. There are no guarantees that the new movies will earn as much or more than the ones that are already running.”

Ramanathan said that the Council was seeking a meeting with the state government to get the new tax scrapped.

When GST was rolled out in July, the Tamil Nadu government had announced that in addition to the tax, it would levy a 30 per cent entertainment tax on cinema tickets.

After multiple rounds of discussions between the film fraternity and Tamil Nadu Government, the entertainment tax was put on hold. The government later announced the revised tax structure.

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| Edited by: Aditya Nair
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