Vijay starrer ‘Master’ directed by Lokesh Kanagaraj is one of the hugely anticipated films this year. The film shooting is currently underway but the film’s business is almost done three months before release. The film is set to hit the screens in April. The makers of Master recently released the details of distributors who have procured the rights for different territories.
Vijay’s previous outing ‘Bigil’ churned out Rs. 300 cr worldwide and became the highest grosser of 2019. Though the film fetched enormous revenue, the distributors especially in TN made marginal profits or managed achieve break-even. While trade was expecting astronomical numbers for the sales of Master rights, we have learnt from industry sources that all area deals have been sold for a right / fair price. Vijay has personally intervened this time and has ensured that the rights were sold at prices that will turn profitable for the distributors from the box office revenue.
The strategic decision made by the makers has made the trade happy. Bigil’s TN rights were sold for whopping Rs. 83 cr and the film managed to earn a share of Rs. 80+ cr. This time ‘Master’ theatrical rights were sold with a cutoff limit of Rs. 68 cr (Rs.77 cr including GST). Despite being offered Rs. 83 cr for the entire TN theatrical rights by a distributor, the makers have sold the film directly to sub-distributors through Seven Screen Studios who are also the co-producers of the film.
In Kerala, Bigil which was sold for Rs. 6.5 cr earned a share of Rs. 9.5 cr. However, the distributors faced the wrath of Kerala Film Producers Association and Film Distributors Association for violating the rule and releasing the film in 300 screens while other language films can be screened only in 125 screens. Keeping this in mind and if the distributor has to adhere to the release restrictions, Master rights has been sold for Rs. 6.25 cr in Kerala. Magic Frames has bought the Travancore area rights in Kerala while Fortune Cinemas is releasing the film in Malabar and Cochin region of the state.
In Telugu states, Bigil rights which were sold for Rs. 8 cr earned a profit of Rs. 10 cr for the distributor. Master rights have been sold for Rs. 9 cr to East Coast Productions which previously released Bigil in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
In Karnataka too, Bigil earned a profit Rs. 10 cr with the rights sold for Rs. 8.5 cr. Dheeraj Enterprises has procured Karnataka distribution rights of Master for Rs. 8.65 cr.
United India Exports and Malik Streams have bought the overseas rights of the film for Rs. 29.5 cr. The distribution house is expected to further sell the rights to other sub-distributors and earn around Rs. 35-40 cr.
As for the non-theatrical rights, Sony Music has acquired the audio rights for Rs. 4.5 cr similar to Bigil. Sun TV has bought the satellite rights for Rs. 32 cr while Amazon Prime has bagged the satellite rights for Rs. 22 cr.
All the rights have been sold except for Hindi dubbing rights and North India area rights which is expected to be sold around Rs. 22-24 cr. The film has made a sale of Rs. 177.92 cr so far and by locking the pending deals the film would have made a business of Rs. 200+ cr.
If all goes well according to the plan, the box office revenue generated by 'Master' is expected to turn profitable for all stakeholders.
With inputs from trade analyst and National Award Winning Writer, Dr G. Dhananjayan