Kollywood producer Venkateswaran suicide raises fears of box Film producer G.
Venkateswaran, 55, elder brother of director Maniratnam, was holidaying with his wife in Kodaikanal when he cut louis vuitton neverfull damier ebene review short his vacation and returned to Chennai on April 1. He left his wife behind. On April 3, the body of GV, as he was called, was found hanging from a fan at his residence. Deep in debt, GV had killed himself. GV's demise seems like Kollywood's deathknell. After the losses of Rs 100 crore in 2002, this year has been no better with a string of mega budget flops. If its big films louis vuitton shoes 41 collapse can Kollywood survive? The statistics aren't heartwarming. Of the 84 louis vuitton mens damier bracelet films released last year, only nine were true blue hits. While 12 movies managed to recover their cost, 63 made losses. 2003 has been no better. Anbe Sivam, starring Kamal Haasan, incurred a loss of Rs 5 crore, the Vijaykant starrer Sokkathangam lost Rs 1 crore, and Vaseegara with Vijay in the lead, Rs 5 crore. Last year, the Rs 5 crore Red, starring Ajith, lost Rs 4 crore. Films' Yey! Nee Romba Azhaga Irukke and Tamizhan lost Rs 1.5 crore and Rs 2 crore each. The crisis in the industry is not only about films bombing. It has also to do with rising video piracy, unimaginative story lines and the friction between top actors and producers. Video piracy, industry sources believe, is mainly responsible for the box office disasters. Says K. Muralidharan, president of the Tamil Film Producers' Council and producer of Anbe Sivam: "The Government has come down heavily on the sale of gutkha and lotteries, but has done nothing much to curb video piracy." GV had another view about what ailed the industry. Three blockbusters bombed this year. "Outdoor expenses and equipment cost too have risen," retorts Vijaykant. Kollywood's new star Vikram, whose Dhool was the only big hit in recent times, feels it is unfair to ask actors to reduce their fee: "The actor has to make the most of a hit. I had no takers after Meera. Filmmakers approached me only after Sethu became a hit." Some producers have decided not to cast top actors in future projects. "Let the stars produce their own movies and feel the pinch," GV had said. Kamal Haasan is doing precisely this with his new project, Sandiyar, after reportedly refusing to do a second movie for Muralidharan for a lesser remuneration to undo the Anbe Sivam damage. As the bickering complicates matters, the plight of theatres in Tamil Nadu is another pointer to Kollywood's declining fortunes. In Tamil Nadu, more than 2,500 cinema halls have shut down over the years. In Chennai, at least a dozen theatres have been converted into marriage halls or showrooms. "The theatres are badly maintained," says Muralidharan, "and the average ticket price of Rs 30 is too high to compete with cheaper versions of entertainment through pirated CDs." Theatre owners, louis vuitton bags in hawaii meanwhile, blame the poor turnout to substandard content and alternative methods of entertainment. R. Ramanujam, editor of film journal Tamil Nadu Entertainment, agrees.
"There ought to be better storylines," he says. "If video piracy was the only reason for failures, how does one explain the hits?" When the Cauvery water dispute flared last year, everyone in the Tamil film industry stood in solidarity with the state's farmers. It is high time Kollywood did one for its own survival.
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