Kollywood: Salary cut for stars on the cards?

Chennai: Tamil film industry is going through a tough phase following Covid outbreak, lockdown, no shootings and theatres shut.

With several movies under-production and those ready for release are in a spot of bother, producers are discussing ways and means to overcome the crisis as over Rs 1,000 crore is at stake.

Sources in the industry say that a section of producers have resolved to convince prominent actors, actresses and technicians including filmmakers and music composers to consider reducing their remuneration following financial burden impacted by the Covid-19.

A prominent producer says, “Artistes and technicians remuneration have sky-rocketed. With future uncertain about theatres and we don’t know when shoots resume, we have no option but to ask them for a pay cut”.

Remember a meeting of producers took place recently and it was decided to appeal to these stars and technicians to reduce their remuneration by 50 per cent.

Meanwhile on salary cut to artistes, producer S R Prabhu tweeted, “A group of producers including me discussed online on post Covid scenario. Decided to discuss with various associations and find a mutual solution on production expenses including salaries. No decisions made other than that”.

Those like Vijay starrer Master and Suriya’s Soorarai Pottru could not release as planned. Also the likes of biggies like Annaatthe (Rajinikanth), Indian 2 ( Kamal Haasan), Maniratnam’s Ponniyin Selvan, Ajith starrer Valimai are waiting to resume shoot.

“Post-production works of many films are pending. As a result producers are forced to lay huge interest for the money borrowed to produce films. We are witnessing troubles”, says a producer.

He adds there are lots of demands pending before the government. “Hopefully abolishing local entertainment tax, granting single window clearance for converting single theatres into multiplexes and reducing GST to 5 per cent would help revive the industry”.