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Off-Key: Cinema owners worried about lack of buzz around Bollywood tunes

Off-Key: Cinema owners worried about lack of buzz around Bollywood tunes


New Delhi: The once-powerful synergy between Hindi film music and box office success appears to be weakening, especially among small-town audiences. Traditionally, hit songs could increase a film's opening box office revenue by at least 20%, serving as an essential marketing tool. However, the emergence of independent music and the notable decline in studio music marketing efforts are diminishing the role of movie soundtracks in creating pre-release excitement, movie theater owners say.

The success of recent films like Pathan And Animal points out that effective music can still be crucial in building anticipation before a film's release.

Amit Sharma, managing director of Miraj Entertainment which operates multiplex cinemas, highlighted the importance of music in attracting audiences to cinemas, suggesting that the industry needs to up its game when it comes to film music to match diverse tastes of Generation Z, who are also consumers of film music. international music.

The challenge is further compounded by inadequate marketing efforts, particularly in smaller towns, Sharma said, and a notable lack of enthusiasm from stakeholders in promoting the songs.

On Tuesday, the top 50 songs list on Spotify in India was dominated by older hits like Satranga And I'm the first, both of movie Animal, And Chaleya (Jawan) in addition to non-cinematic tracks such as Heeriye And Husn, indicating a change in listening habits.

Still, the enduring appeal of film songs in box office success is undeniable, with tracks leaving a lasting impact beyond their cinematic broadcast, said Yusuf Shaikh, commercial head of feature films at the company production and distribution company Percept Pictures.

For example, Ekta Kapoors Ragini MMS2 had benefited enormously from Doll track featuring Sunny Leone when it was released in 2014, and Emraan Hashmi-starrer Often Iwe still remember Jahalak Ja song sung by Himesh Reshammiya.

Many films take off when the mainstream audience comes for a particular song. Music can be one of the biggest selling points of a film, but a lot of it depends on how it's promoted. Assuming that social media alone is enough doesn’t help, without grassroots awareness around the songs, half the battle is lost before they are released,” Shaikh explained.

He cited the example of films like Rocky and Rani Kii Prem Kahani and Rajinikanths Gaolerbuzz around which picked up thanks to specific songs.

Film distributor Sunny Khanna points out that engaging music, coupled with star power, significantly enhances the marketability of a film, providing a cost-effective alternative to traditional advertising methods. Filmmakers need to understand that this gives rise to very exhaustive marketing, from YouTube and television to radio and outdoor events, everything that you would otherwise have to pay for,” Khanna said.

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Published: February 13, 2024, 02:57 PM IST




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