Actress Samantha Ruth Prabhu will take on the new trend of southern films seeking wide pan-Indian releases with her new film Yashoda which hits screens on August 12 in Tamil, Hindi, Malayalam and Kannada along with the original Telugu version.
The sci-fi film was written and directed by duo Hari Shankar and Harish Narayan. Among the Hindi speaking audience, Prabhu is known for the original Amazon Prime Video The family man.
Admittedly, films in southern languages are rapidly being released in northern Indian markets, benefiting from the success of recent hits like Allu Arjun’s. Pushpa and SS Rajamouli RRR. The Telugu and Tamil film industries have overtaken Bollywood in 2021, in part because big-ticket Hindi films only started release in November as cinemas closed due to the pandemic. According to trade experts, Telugu cinema topped the pecking order with box office collections of Rs. 1,200 crore in 2021, followed by Tamil film industry at Rs. 800 crore and Hindi at Rs. 700 crore. Ticketing site BookMyShow said Telugu and Tamil films together accounted for nearly 50% of total tickets sold on the platform last year. In a normal year, Hindi films typically generate 60% of box office receipts.
Unlike Bollywood, which makes films in a language accessible to a greater number of people, regional cinema has, over the years, been intrinsically aware of being limited to the national market. Regional filmmakers therefore know that they cannot afford to be niche – films must operate to the lowest common denominator, even in the smallest villages of their home countries. Having saturated domestic audiences, regional actors and filmmakers are now considering new markets and making bigger films. But the stars of the south are clear: they want to be part of mass films and appear as authentic.
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