We live for the moments that leave memories forever. A film maker films those sublime feelings in each of the project thru the lens from the heart. Many years back director Cheran did an “Autograph” and aesthetically rekindled charming memories of puppy loves, crushes and diehard romances of audience. But if you ask him now, he has more than one volume of Autograph which is filled with pains than gains of a film maker.
The changing trend in cinema industry pushes the art back and brings the business first. The corporate structure bifurcates the industry into two and gives space only for the biggies and others are sidelined. Cheran stands on the other side and trying to innovate a new business model which skips cinema malls to reach the homes of audience directly. There may be faults, biased stands in the present business model. But can C2H the innovation of Cheran taste success by avoiding the traditional method and people init? It's a big question. More than twise the C2H launch was postponed and finally hit the doors of 20 lakh homes as Cheran claims.
I too had few discussions with Mr. Cheran about the pros and cons of C2H. I suggested him to think and apply beyond DVD format and local cables. With the technology in hand, I promoted the idea of global streaming of movies on pay per view basis to moving taxis, trains, busses, air planes, hotels, malls and homes of any part of the world. My opinion is, if I can't give theater experience then I should supplement with more exclusive contents which I cant get in theatres. After his first release “JK Enum Nanbanini Kadhai”, he may or may not go for this suggestion, since it involves lots of business activities like tieups to carry the content to desired destinations. But if he is not, soon somebody else will do it, because the trend is fast changing.
But not just Mr. Cheran and others are feeling the heat. It's not just restricted to Kollywood, Tollywood, Mollywood or Bollywood. Including Hollywood the entire movie industry is facing a crisis. Invaded by mobile phones, wearable gadgets, video games and streaming web portals, younger audiences are rapidly drifting away. But this doesn't mean that cinema industry itself will drown, we should think other way.
Like Cheran thinks there are many heads thinking to float, survive and win the challenge. The strength of cinema is Story telling, which cant be replaced by any technology. Only the presentation will change, story telling will remain same. So there is no threat to Cinema. How to reach is challenging. Cinema is the only entertainment medium which survived for more that 100 years and growing. So the real possibility is soon the industry will rebound with freshly equipped with modern futuristic advancements.
Just visualize it. In another Ten years, virtual theaters may come, i.e instead of going to theaters, we will create virtual giant screens on air, which only can be seen using a wearable glass. With the latest interactive technology, the audience may have the pleasure of changing the twists and turns of a movie, in simple we may watch customized cinema. I also predict beyond that, literally, we can be part of a movie and we can watch ourselves in a cinema. I Googled a synopsis of Brave New World (1931), a novel by Aldous Huxley which predicts a similar entertainment experience.
Cinema will become more like interactive TV says Christopher Nolan, the Interstellar director. He predicts film makers and exhibitors will respond strongly and creatively to the change and challenge of modern interactive mediums. Never before cinema is challenged like this, actually now the industry feels only the tip of the challenge.
The new trending developments will force innovation, experimentation and expense. Now people say with the invasion of digial platforms the cost of production has come down, but the future will be a costly affair, which will demand more investments to produce, promote and distribute.
In kollywood Kamal smelled the change and tried to release Viswaroopam thru DTH. Now Cheran trying to go further with C2H.
So buckle your seat belt because we too as a fan part of the super fast change.