Television

DD’s new revenue mantra: big films

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NEW DELHI: Indian pubcaster Doordarshan has decided to attempt maximizing revenue through its film slots by showing as many blockbuster films as possible during the remaining part of the year.

This assumes importance in view of the fact that DD does not have exclusive cricket telecast rights, which brought in sizeable revenue during the previous years.

A high level committee headed by Prasar Bharati CEO Brijeshwar Singh has been formed to ensure smooth implementation of the rejuvenated film policy.
The other members of the panel are Doordarshan DG L D Mandloi and Rajat Bhargava, additional DG (finance).
DD has five film slots in a week --- the Friday night feature film, Saturday night feature film, Retrospective of Sunday Afternoons, Bio-Scope serialized feature film slot and the slot on Hindi belt network.

The films will be marketed by Prasar Bharati’s marketing divisions in Mumbai and Delhi and will be largely procured through National Films Development Corporation.
Prasar Bharati has chosen films to be the revenue growth engines as ananalysis of revenue flow has shown that they have the maximum potential to deliver net revenue.

For example, Friday feature film is a clear winner. Besides being the most watched feature film on television in all TV homes with ratings of 7 and above (as per TAM data), it also fetches net revenue in excess of Rs 8 million per film.

The Saturday feature film is a close second with a net revenue realization of approximately Rs 7 million. Retrospective on Sundays, which saw films of eminent artistes, have a niche audience appeal, yet manages to draw sizeable revenue.

Since last one and a half years, Doordarshan has been showing blockbuster films on its national network on a regular basis.

Earlier, the frequency was once a month, which was interspersed with other new/ recent films. Gone are the days when DD scheduled only old movies.

An internal analysis by Prasar Bharati, which manages DD, has also shown that whenever blockbuster films were scheduled, they not only managed to garner higher revenue, but also attracted a sizeable C&S home audience.

Shah Rukh Khan starrer Swades and Akshay Kumar-Priyanka Chopra starrer Aitraz being some recent examples.

The blockbusters offer DD another plus. They helped promote other serials and programmes of the national broadcaster, especially offering a sample to those C&S home visitors to DD.

Last financial year ended 31 March 2006, Doordarshan earned revenue of Rs 9.6 billion. The present effort is to gear up the national broadcaster to meet the challenges and repeat its good performance this year too.

Giving effect to the new film strategy, DD has scheduled following hit films in the forthcoming days: Munnabhai MBBS on 29 September 2006, Jism on 30 September, Hum Saath Saath Hain on 1 October on Hindi belt network and Swades on 2 October being a Dussehra / Gandhi Jayanti holiday.

To mark the occasion of birth anniversary of Father of the Nation, DD will also be showing Gandhi Se Mahatma Tak as part of serialized film slot, Bio Scope, on Monday, Tuesday Wednesday (2-4 October).

Koi Mil Gaya, Mujh Se Shaadi Karoge, Virudh are among other big films lined for October.

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