Less than a month after Tamil superstar Rajinikanth's Tamil film 'Lingaa' hit the screens, several distributors and theatre owners are complaining of huge losses and demanding their money back.
Rroduced by Rockline Venkatesh the theatrical rights to 'Lingaa' were bought by Eros International for around Rs 100 crore. Eros International, in turn, sold the distribution rights for Tamil Nadu to Vendhar Films, which in turn sub-sold them to smaller distributors in the state.
Trusting the brand value of Rajinikanth, the distributors and theatre owners say they had invested money into the film. Releasing on Rajinikanth's birthday last month, 'Lingaa' has however failed to bring in collections, with a few takers for the film. With neither Vendhar Films nor Eros International willing to talk to them, distributors and theatre owners are now demanding that superstar Rajinikanth intervene in the matter to compensate them for their losses.
Rajinikanth's 2002 film 'Baba' had also bombed at the box-office, and the actor had gone on to compensate the distributors and exhibitors for their losses.
"The film hasn't earned that much revenue. At least we expected 100 per cent plus but we got only 30 per cent revenue on the total amount we paid to the company. This money is theatre people's money. At this stage Rajinikanth should get involved in the matter because theatre people have suffered. If, because of this attitude theatres get closed, where will they screen films? We are requesting him to save theatre people," said M Reuben, a distributor from Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi, Kanyakumari area.
Directed by KS Ravikumar, 'Lingaa' released on Rajinikanth's birthday last year Dec 12. It also features Sonakshi Sinha and Anushka Shetty in lead roles.