The outbreak of COVID 19 and the subsequent lockdown has been a bolt from the blue for Mollywood. Even as some new releases were making steady collections, the theatres had to be closed down on March 11.
The ongoing shootings also had to be stopped and the industry came to a standstill. With lockdown imposed across the country, the big question now is when will things be back to normal for Malayalam cinema?
A prominent filmmaker, whose movie was due for release during April, told sify.com that the current expectation is that shootings could resume by June and that it could take until September when theatres will be functioning again. That is, if things continue to go fine in Kerala, which is perhaps one of the few states in India where things are under control at this moment.
There have been reports that some Bollywood producers are planning to release their movies on OTT platforms. Whether such a move could happen in Malayalam too is not clear as of now.
Another area of concern is the opening of the overseas market. There are some big budget movies which were planning for worldwide release. Now in the current situation, even if theatres in India are opened, there are doubts whether it will happen in foreign countries.
Add to this, the issues of date clashes due to change in schedules. The actors in Mollywood, who jump from one set to the other doing many movies one after the other will find it difficult to stick to their prior commitments.
Already the daily wage earners in Mollywood are suffering due to the lockdown. Now with uncertainty looming large, Mollywood is going through the greatest crisis in history.