Chennai, Dec 14 () : Kamal Hassan is in talks with Malaysia’s Astro (partner with Sun Direct) and Singapore’s Sing Tel as well as with some European and Australia DTH operators to air Viswaroopam.
Even as the theatre owners in parts of Tamil Nadu and the distributors of North India are up in arms against Kamal Hassan’s move to air Viswaroopam one day before release on DTH, the actor has been in contact with foreign players for a wider global release.
Airtel which has 30% share of DTH in Tamil Nadu says that the pricing of the movie is the deciding factor for DTH players to put it on their platform. Airtel had got in the deal with sharing of revenue from downloads, say sources.
Airtel however admitted that the film can be stored in a Digital Video Recorder (DVR) for one day after which it would get erased. The film stored would be encrypted so that the source from where it was copied would be known. According to those in IT sector, the film can be copied and codes erased by certain software.
As far as Airtel is considered, it is doing the role of a distributor and pays a percentage of its revenue to the producer. The piracy issue is not its brief.
Yet another problem that Airtel expects is that only die-hard Kamal Hassan fans would want to see the film first through DTH while others would not blindly pay Rs 1000 for a single view without knowing whether it was worth the money.
Usually DTH puts movies that were released for pay per view and if the film is a hit or generate good word-of-mouth, then those who missed it or want to see it again would choose this option.
Another revelation is that contrary to the notion that DTH connections are more in Chennai the semi-urban areas account for bulk of the subscribers. The transmission quality in semi- urban and rural areas by cable operators is substandard and hence many have gone to DTH.