The straight to digital slate of films spans five Indian languages, and the titles are scheduled to premiere between May and August.
A day after announcing the premiere of Shoojit Sircar’s Gulabo Sitabo, Amazon Prime Video on Friday released the list of an additional six films that will be premiering directly on the streaming service. The straight to digital slate of films spans five Indian languages and the titles are scheduled to premiere between May and August.
First off the mark will be J.J. Fredrick’s legal drama Ponmagal Vandhal (Tamil), starring Jyothika, that begins playing from May 29. It also stars Parthiban, Bhagyaraj, Prathap Pothen and Pandiarajan and is produced by Suriya and Rajsekar Karpoorasundarapandian.
Another much anticipated title is Anu Menon’s Shakuntala Devi with Vidya Balan in lead. A biographical drama on the extraordinary life of Shakuntala Devi, mathematics genius, writer and astrologer, who was popularly known as the human computer, it also features Sanya Malhotra and is produced by Sony Pictures Networks Productions and Vikram Malhotra. The date for its release on the platform, however, is yet to be announced.
Penguin (Tamil and Telugu), begins streaming from June 19. Starring Keerthy Suresh, it is written and directed by Eshavar Karthic and is produced by Stone Bench Films and Karthik Subbaraj.
Law (Kannada), plays from June 26. Starring Ragini Chandran, Siri Prahlad and veteran actor Mukhyamantri Chandru, it is written and directed by Raghu Samarth and produced by Ashwini and Puneeth Rajkumar.
French Biryani (Kannada) drops on July 24 and features actors Danish Sait, Sal Yusuf and Pitobash as leads. The movie is written by Avinash Balekkala, directed by Pannaga Bharana and produced by Ashwini and Puneeth Rajkumar and Gurudutt A Talwar.
Sufiyum Sujatayum (Malayalam), starring Aditi Rao Hydari and Jayasurya has also been acquired by Amazon Prime Video but the date for it has not been announced as yet. Written and directed by Naranipuzha Shanavas, it is produced by Vijay Babu’s Friday Film House.
“At Prime Video we believe in listening to what our consumers want and working backwards from there. This belief is the genesis of our latest offering,” said Vijay Subramaniam, Director and Head, Content, Amazon Prime Video, India, adding, “Over the last two years, Prime Video has become the destination of choice for our customers to watch new releases, across the languages, within weeks of their theatrical release. Now we’re taking this one step further, with seven of India’s most-anticipated films premiering exclusively on Prime Video, bringing the cinematic experience to their doorstep.”
“Indian audiences have been eagerly awaiting the release of these seven highly anticipated films and we are delighted that Amazon Prime Video will now be premiering these movies for our customers – who can enjoy watching these from the safety & comfort of their homes and on a screen of their choice. Prime Video with its deep penetration in India, with viewership across over 4000 towns and cities, and its world-wide reach in more than 200 countries and territories, will give a large global release footprint to these films. We feel truly excited about this initiative and are confident of delighting our Prime Members with this offering” said Gaurav Gandhi, Director and Country General Manager, Amazon Prime Video India.
The films will be available at no extra cost for Amazon Prime members. They will be able to watch it, like other titles, anywhere and anytime on the Prime Video app for various devices.
INOX expresses displeasure
Meanwhile, the decision of Gulabo Sitabo to skip theatrical release met with criticism and displeasure from the theatre owners on Thursday.
A statement from INOX stated: “The decision of the production house to deviate from the globally prevalent content windowing practice is alarming and disconcerting.”
It went on to call them “fair-weather friends rather than all-weather life-long partners”, threatening to take “retributive measures”.
Till now there had been an eight-week window between the theatrical and digital release for Bollywood films.