A day after the Kerala Film Exhibitors’ Federation, downing shutters, refused to screen movies, 55 theatre owners on Friday broke away and decided to float a new organisation.
Following the Federation’s decision that they will not screen any films from Thursday in the wake of an ongoing tiff with producers and distributors, 38 of their members defied the ban and screened Tamil blockbuster ‘Bhairava’. On Friday, another 17 theatres announced that they will screen films from Saturday.
Sources told IANS that in the coming days, the Federation will see more theatre owners coming out and actor Dileep, who owns several cinemas, has decided to take the lead and on Saturday will meet producers, distributors and the breakaway faction of the Federation to cobble a new organisation.
In response, Federation President Liberty Basheer said they will take action against those who violate the unanimous decision.
“We will wait and see what’s going to happen. The state government is looking into our complaints and we are expecting a decision shortly,” said Basheer.
The dispute came to the fore after the Federation sought a change in the revenue sharing ratio between film exhibitors and the distributors. The ratio currently stands at 60:40 of the collections and the exhibitors want it to be 50:50, which has been opposed by the producers.
This has been the model since 2003.
The distribution of new Malayalam films has remained in limbo since last month when the Federation decided not to screen new releases but screened films in other languages.