The sale of movie tickets at outrageous prices around the release of major films has stirred a controversy in Tamil Nadu. The demand to regulate the film ticket prices at theatres is gaining momentum, especially after the Andhra Pradesh government issued a similar notice a few months ago. The Andhra Pradesh government has also proposed to sell the movie tickets online only through its website.
The movie goers in Tamil Nadu claimed that in some locations, tickets for the first show of Kamal Haasan starrer Vikram were being sold at exorbitant prices.
There are 1050 theaters in Tamil Nadu. Around 200 to 250 movies are released each year. It is absolutely not appropriate to have all the theaters charging Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 per ticket, the movie goers allege. This generally happens when the movies of big stars are being released. Particularly, the movies of the 4-5 big stars of Tamil film industry are being sold for Rs 600– Rs 700 in theatres. Around 50-100 theatres charge such high amounts per ticket, allege the audiences.
However, the distributors and exhibitors blame the high demand for the movies and they suggest the solution could be paid premiere shows.
Karthik Ravivarma, who works in a film distribution company, said, “Price increases for the movie tickets are unavoidable because there are 5,000 people looking for 500 seats in the theatre. The only solution is to raise the ticket price to Rs 1200-Rs 2000, which normally ranges from Rs 400 to Rs 800. This practice is already there in the West for the first day first show and the premiere shows of the movies at certain multiplexes.”
Ravivarma also suggested that the government should consider this proposal and this could bring down the film ticket prices.