Multiplex ops in talks with ESPN for theatrical telecast of World Cup matches

MUMBAI: Multiplex and cinema theatre owners have approached sports broadcaster ESPN Star Sports (ESS) to obtain rights for showing the cricket World Cup that kicks off on 19 February.

ESS, the official telecast rights holder of the World Cup, is in talks but is yet to take a final call as several issues are yet to be cleared.

"ESS is negotiating with several parties," a multiplex chain chief executive said on condition of anonymity.

Last year, many multiplexes had screened IPL matches live. 

Said Cinemax CEO Sunil Punjabi, "We have had talks with the rights holder for live screening for the World Cup. There are issues like commercial rights and delivery that are to be sorted out. We are expecting that by the first week of February, this will be sorted out."

Leading multiplex chain PVR, which had shown IPL matches live on 18 screens last year, is also working on the gameplan for this year.

"Though talks are on, nothing concrete has come out yet," said PVR Group president Pramod Arora.

The ICC Cricket World will be played in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh from 19 February to 2 April.

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